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Showing 1-10 of 18 reviews(4 star, Verified Purchases). See all 320 reviews
on October 13, 2011
This is one of the most engrossing books I've read in a while-- I have to admit, I couldn't put it down. A perfect book for fall, especially a dark rainy evening!

The novel is an interesting mix of creepy/scary and psychological tension, and the story is told in a combination of the second and third person. Though certain aspects of the book can be far-fetched upon reflection, the author weaves his tale in a way that makes it seem totally believable.

Surprisingly, for a novel I enjoyed so much there was very little character development-- you kind of have to take all of the players at face value and not dig too deeply. If you're able to overlook this and dive straight into the story, you'll find the speed of the plot keeps things moving along at a nice steady clip. In many ways, the lack of details and insights into the characters makes everything even more spooky.
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on January 28, 2012
I'm very torn as to how to rate this book and I may go back and change it later.

Full disclosure - I've never read anything by Bohjalian so I had no expectations going in. I also grew up reading King, Straub and Koontz so I at least used to really like the horror genre.

This book definitely sucked me in. I needed to find out what happened. At first the use of 2nd person for Chip's scenes was weird, but I got used to it rather quickly. The ending was unexpected (which is rare these days) and certainly shocked me. It also really, really disturbed me and that's part of the reason I don't know how to rate this book. Usually with books I really like, I'll read them over and over. I know I'll never read this book again.

***mild spoilers***
I am bothered at how complacent Chip and Emily are, but I can chalk that up to the fact that they are being fed some bizarre (and conflicting) things from the herbalists. I'm also bothered that Bohjalian doesn't really write the herbalists as evil. By the end of the book it is clearly apparent that Clary, John, Anise et. al., are reprehensible, disgusting and vile.

Overall, I'd recommend this book to others as long as they know what they are getting in to. This isn't a nice story and it will leave you feeling very disturbed.
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VINE VOICEon November 3, 2011
Chris Bohjalian has made a career out of writing compelling fiction with complex characters that are placed in situations that challenge them. Some of his better-known novels include MIDWIVES, THE DOUBLE BLIND and SECRETS OF EDEN. In all of those novels, conscience and morality come into play and every character is forced to make difficult decisions.

It will come as quite a surprise to his regular readers that Mr. Bohjalian has now ventured into the realm of the supernatural with his latest release --- THE NIGHT STRANGERS. Since his novels never pull any punches --- and quite often present surprising plot twists --- I was prepared for anything with this book. It's safe to say that there is something for everyone here --- enough chills to satisfy fans of the supernatural in a character-driven plot that reads like dramatic fiction.

Airline pilot Chip Linton and his family --- wife Emily and twin daughters Hallie and Garnet --- are settling into their new home in Northern New Hampshire. They are looking to make an escape from a tragic airline incident that has emotionally scarred Chip. A seventy-seat regional jet he was flying suffered double engine failure and was forced to make an emergency landing in Lake Champlain. Unlike the Miracle on the Hudson, Chip Linton and Flight 1611 were not the subject of a heroic feat. Flight 1611 crashed hard and the impact along with the freezing lake water claimed the lives of 39 of his passengers.

Now, attempting to rebuild their lives, the Linton's have moved into an old Victorian home in Bethel, New Hampshire. It is not long before the images and memories in Chip's mind begin materializing to him in the basement of the home. He sees victims of his crash --- adults and children --- and is drawn to a door in the basement that ironically has 39 bolts in it. These night strangers that Chip visits with most evenings are trying to both console and warn him. What they are trying to tell him is unclear and strange things begin to befall Chip Linton.

At the same time, the rest of his family are attempting to settle in to their new community. Hallie and Garnet are attending fifth-grade and Emily is making friends with some of the locals. Emily suspects that there might be something more than simply eccentric with the local residents as the women of the local White Mountain village have all adopted names representing herbs and spices. If this weren't creepy enough, the women are showing a strange interest in Emily's daughters. Are the Linton's all going mad or is there really something wicked happening among the White Mountains?

Bohjalian deftly peels back the layers and let's the readers decide if Chip Linton is going insane or if he is really in the midst of a supernatural haunting. THE NIGHT STRANGERS will not make you jump out of your seat but instead provides chills and creepy moments that make you question all that is happening. There are definite echoes of classic literary horror from Ira Levin's ROSEMARY'S BABY to Thomas Tryon's HARVEST HOME and a New England feel that calls to mind the better work of Stephen King. A great book for a spooky fall night!

Reviewed by Ray Palen for New Mystery Reader
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on December 9, 2014
Overall I enjoyed this book. I liked the various perspectives. I liked the relationships between the main character and the girls (both alive & dead). The wife is a strong believable character. HOWEVER, I did find the "herbalists" to be hokey & not at all scary.

I disagree with the product description. This book wasn't poignant or powerful. I was originally referred to this book because I previously purchased and LOVED the author's book Midwives. Midwives is indeed both poignant & powerful. While the Night Strangers was an easy read it was without much substance. I recommend it as a beach read or for a plane ride.
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on January 4, 2012
So what can I say besides I loved the story. Except the ending. I don't know why the ending was the ending. As a writer myself, I know these things come hard and after much thought. The ending is all that's left for the judgement. But I don't want to judge this book on the ending because I enjoyed the characters so much. Each and every one of them were imprinted on my memory. The ending...well, we'll leave that for another day. Another issue. We don't always agree with the end of things, the reward or punishment. Sometimes we get exactly what we asked for. Even though we thought we were doing everything right. So, as I give advice to my adult children, 'we don't always get what we want. Sometimes we get what we deserve.' I read the reviews. Plenty of warnings said...NO. But I love Chris Bohjalian. No one is going to send me packing when it comes to one of his novels. I enjoyed every page until the end. That's all I can say. I hope you enjoy it too.
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on April 17, 2017
Very good
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on December 22, 2011
I haven't read anything this creepy since Thomas Tryon's "Harvest Home." Chris Bohjalian's "The Night Strangers" begins with an airplane crash and ends. . .oops, no spoilers. . .and offers chills on every page.

The Linton family is doing well until pilot Chip ditches his aircraft into Lake Champlain. Thirty-nine lives are lost. The resulting guilt and PTSD and notoriety drive him and his wife to relocate their family in the White Mountains of Vermont.

Unfortunately, they move into a village of herbalists with a history of taking their rituals a little too far.

Chip's nightmares become real to him. His twin daughters, the family cat, all are endangered by the "friends" they are making and the man they once counted on to lead the family.

"The Night Strangers" is not my top favorite Bohjalian, but it's a new twist from an author who has already proven he likes to take chances and surprise his readers.
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on April 12, 2013
I enjoyed the book but to me there were too many plots/story lines that really didn't come together at least to my satisfactiion. I also think the book should either leave you satisfied that the conflict was resolved or leave you wanting more. I did not get either one although some of the conflicts were resolved, sort of.

Not a bad read at all and I looked forward to my nightly reading session so it did have my attention. I would descibe the book as The Shining with Dorian Gray.
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on November 17, 2014
It was a page turner but ultimately if you are like me and do not like to see children in peril then this is not the book for you. Some of the plotting was poor but if you like creepy and a good ghost story you may enjoy it.
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on January 28, 2016
This story is really creepy and the ending is ghastly. Not the usual Chris Bohjalian.
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