Uninvited, the by Liz Jenzen

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Synopsis:
A seven-year-old girl puts a nail gun to her grandmother’s neck and fires. An isolated incident, say the experts. The experts are wrong. Across the world, children are killing their families. Is violence contagious? As chilling murders by children grip the country, anthropologist Hesketh Lock has his own mystery to solve: a bizarre scandal in the Taiwan timber industry.

Hesketh has never been good at relationships: Asperger’s Syndrome has seen to that. But he does have a talent for spotting behavioral patterns and an outsider’s fascination with group dynamics. Nothing obvious connects Hesketh’s Asian case with the atrocities back home. Or with the increasingly odd behavior of his beloved stepson, Freddy. But when Hesketh’s Taiwan contact dies shockingly and more acts of sabotage and child violence sweep the globe, he is forced to acknowledge possibilities that defy the rational principles on which he has staked his life, his career, and, most devastatingly of all, his role as a father.

Part psychological thriller, part dystopian nightmare, The Uninvited is a powerful and viscerally unsettling portrait of apocalypse in embryo.

Review:
It is very rare that I am ever absolutely enthralled by a book cover and immediately sold by the very first line of a synopsis of a book, but this novel is one of those rare cases.

This book is mainly centered around two distinct and weird occurrences which affect people from all over the globe: 1. A child will kill someone, usually a member of their own family, with no remorse, no emotion and no recollection of the event after the fact; and 2. There is a worker that will sabotage the company in which they work, and therefore interrupt the every day workings of said company. After the sabotage, the worker will then commit suicide.

At first, the two events are treated as separate and are not tied to a single cause until later on in the novel with the help from the main character, Hesketh Lock. Hesketh is an anthropologist who suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome and has noticeable habits and ticks that reveal themselves throughout the entirety of the novel. He is hired to investigate the motive for the sabotages and to discover the names of the saboteurs, but what he uncovers is even more disturbing.

Throughout the novel I was on the edge of my seat trying to decipher the clues and to try and figure out what is the true cause and origin of these events. Even though I felt the ending to be satisfactory enough to explain the events occurring in this novel, and I appreciate the message that the book conveys, I couldn’t help but feel disappointed.

Rating:
I gave this novel a 3 out of 5. I wish that the ending was a bit more satisfying. I found this novel to be a bit repetitious at times.

To whom would you recommend to read this novel:
I recommend this novel to those who enjoy reading mystery or horror novels, or perhaps books that have aspects of both genres.

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