The Graveyard Apartment: A Novel by Mariko Koike

The Graveyard Apartment: A NovelThe Graveyard Apartment: A Novel by Mariko Koike
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

A young family has bought an apartment in a new building that houses fourteen apartments but only has eight current tenants. The building itself overlooks a cemetery and crematorium. Upon moving in the family begins to experience a few odd occurrences starting with their pet bird dying shortly after arrival but then the young daughter claims she still sees the bird.

When shown around the building the family discovers one odd design flaw to the place, the basement only has access via the elevator with no stairway to use in case of emergency. Of course this leads to even more problems for the young couple and their daughter and before you know it things really start to take place in their new home.

The Graveyard Apartment by Mariko Koike is a horror read originally published in Japan in 1986 but is now being translated and republished. I found myself having a bit of trouble with this one due to it originally being a Japanese tale and not being familiar with that language.

First the main characters in the story are Teppei, Misao, and Tamao which led to a bit of confusion for a while for myself to remember which was the father, mother and child in the story just not being familiar with the names. After getting used to that it did get slightly better but there were also thing like the apartment listing being in yen so I kept questioning why not translate that so we’d know if they go a major bargain to move into a place with the view of a cemetery. There were also words here and there that I wasn’t familiar with that possibly just didn’t translate well to English.

But aside from the things with this being a translated book I also found myself just simply eventually losing interest in the story. I just didn’t feel the major pull of something incredibly scary going on that I should feel reading a book of this nature. Sure, some odd occurrences begin happening but I just wanted more over the course of the book. Not too terrible of an ending to this one but by that time I just really wasn’t left with any kind of excitement other than finishing.

Overall, this one just wasn’t for me unfortunately. I’m sure some will find the story scary enough but it just moved a bit too slowly for my taste along with a few translation issues.

I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


Categories: Uncategorized

4 replies

  1. Sorry this wasn’t for you.The blurb and the idea of Japanese horror does sound quite promising, sad it didn’t quite deliver though. The character names are confusing.Great review.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Diana, I think I just lost some interest along the line expecting some really scary happenings but instead there seemed to be some info dumps here and there that just slowed it down to me. 😦


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