by Marisha Pessl

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Review

Night Film is more an experience than a book.

Investigative journalist Scott McGrath once infamously suggested that the reclusive cult horror film-maker Stanislas Cordova be exposed as a tormented and twisted creep connected with more than one suspicious death. For that suggestion, McGrath lost his career and his marriage, but became even more convinced that the deaths connected to Cordova were more than coincidental. McGrath's suspicions are renewed when beautiful, 24-year-old Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse, an apparent suicide.

By investigating Ashley's death, McGrath renews his search for the reclusive Cordova, who has not been seen in public for more than three decades. His investigation unfolds through a series of thinly connected interviews with anyone who had affiliations with the Cordovas in the past, and press clippings and photographs depicted in their entirety in the novel. His investigation is hindered at nearly every turn, as it seems everyone who was involved in Cordova's films has disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Unsure what question he is actually pursuing an answer to, McGrath's investigation moves from curious to complex to disturbing.

Pessl's saga was un-put-down-able for this reader. I fully appreciated the graphic representations as well as the haunting depictions of Cordova's cinematic genius. I was genuinely intrigued by both the horror and the mystery, and am still mulling over the ending nearly a week later. Highly recommended for fans of cult classics.

One quick tip: The audio version of this novel is great.  Still, I suggest picking up a copy of the print version in order to view the pictures...and the blank pages....

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