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Gelap Book Cover Gelap
Ariff Adly
Thriller
Buku Fixi
23rd August 2014
Hardcopy
268
Public Library

A group of friends have a tradition of an annual wild party. But this one, set in a remote jungle, might just be their last: a crazed killer appear to be on the loose.

 

Okay, I have issues with this book but I would like to start off by discussing what I liked about it first. The writing style is very engaging and gripping and this I know because I finished this book within a day and I have not done that in a very long time. I enjoyed how the phrase and the wording used are very simple and easy to understand as my Malay isn’t the best. That’s about it really now let us venture off into what bothered me about this book.

This will be a rant review… SPOILERS AHEAD SO READ WITH CAUTION.

(For context the friends are Anip, Adi, Atirah, Ed, Eva and Sheqa whereas Maya is Adi’s girlfriend and Dawi Anip’s girlfriend.)

The plot of this book is very cliche’ and quite honestly predictable. The whole friends in an isolated area are overdone and you definitely would know the plot could be of either two scenarios; revenge plot or murder without reason plot. In this case, it was a revenge plot whereby the author quite possibly took inspiration from the Saw series because of the similarities that are too many to be coincidental.

My problem with this book wasn’t the gore or horror or how the victims were killed or tortured because quite frankly I am a big fan of the Saw series so these types of gore are definitely up my alley. My problem is in the execution of it by the perpetrator, Maya, because the timeline and how it is done just doesn’t make sense and it is due to that that I could not suspend my disbelief any longer.

You are asking me to believe that within a few short days which I think are 2 days at most when the killing spree happened, Maya was able to:

  1. Abduct and kill Adi (her lover) using this bucket contraption thing whereby he would drown
  2. Fake an attack onto herself to make the others believe there is an intruder
  3. Smash and ruin the cars used to get to this banglo which I must say take a lot of work because she slashed the tires, cut the battery wire, smashed the hood and windows
  4. Abduct Atirah and tie her whilst doing some sort of surgery on her
  5. Have time to put bear traps on the road to the banglo
  6. Prepare all these torture devices and put them in the banglo

I understand that Maya had drugged the others but come on man nobody has that much energy and strength to do all this so fast. Also, how did Maya even anticipate that Anip would try to go to the main road to get help and use the exact road where the bear trap was which was tied to a tree which so happened to have a wasp nest. Like what?

The suspension of my disbelief completely faltered because how the hell did she manage to bring all of these torture equipment and many more without raising the suspicion of Adi of which the banglo belonged to??? You are telling me that Adi was completely fine with his girlfriend bringing bear traps to a supposed getaway with friends? He is not in the least weirded out?

Had the author just given some context or how Maya executed this perhaps I could believe the timeframe of how all of this could occur. Perhaps.

It just seems so improbable that she did this all alone.

Another issue I have with this book was the characters. There were not enough scenes where I could get to know these characters on a deeper level to truly understand Maya’s pain and anguish. The characters felt very flat to me and there was a dissociation between me (a reader) and the characters whereby I did not care about any of them at all. The plot explaining why these groups of friends were targeted as well as their past actions did not mesh in my mind to be realistic.

It seemed to be a huge leap from them being delinquents back in high school to them also raping a girl for the reason the author wrote them to be delinquents were so they could help a friend. Again, there were not enough scenes to show they were truly delinquents because they wanted to be or because they liked it. In this case, I am talking about Adi, Anip, and Ed. Eva is just the queen bitch and Atirah and Sheqa were her henchwomen.

So, it confused me as to how the author could give more background or characterization to some of the characters but then to others it was lacking or was ineffective. Perhaps there were too many characters involved who knows.

I apologize that this became a rant review I just had put my feelings out there. I mean I really liked the book even when the plot was very recycled I was rooting for the gore and the mystery and the gore but then the more I read till the end the more I was like wait what the fuck this don’t make sense in the slightest. Where the hell did you get all this stuff from??? How the hell did you do it all alone??? I NEED MORE INFORMATION PEOPLE!

Overall, the book is entertaining but don’t expect it to blow your mind or anything.