Monday, April 12, 2021

Review: The Lost Village by Camilla Sten

Title: The Lost Village
Author: Camilla Sten
Published by: Minotaur Books
Released: March 23, 2021
Source: Review Copy provided by Publisher
Synopsis: The Blair Witch Project meets Midsommar in this brilliantly disturbing thriller from Camilla Sten, an electrifying new voice in suspense. 
Documentary filmmaker Alice Lindstedt has been obsessed with the vanishing residents of the old mining town, dubbed “The Lost Village,” since she was a little girl. In 1959, her grandmother’s entire family disappeared in this mysterious tragedy, and ever since, the unanswered questions surrounding the only two people who were left—a woman stoned to death in the town center and an abandoned newborn—have plagued her. She’s gathered a small crew of friends in the remote village to make a film about what really happened.
But there will be no turning back.
Not long after they’ve set up camp, mysterious things begin to happen. Equipment is destroyed. People go missing. As doubt breeds fear and their very minds begin to crack, one thing becomes startlingly clear to Alice:
They are not alone.
They’re looking for the truth…
But what if it finds them first?
My Thoughts: Thanks so much to Minotaur Books for providing me with a free copy for honest review. I was so excited to have The Lost Village in my hands and have the opportunity to read it early.
There were so many things about The Lost Village that were my jam. Things that I just love in books.
My favorite thing about The Lost Village was the atmosphere and setting. I love an abandoned place. I love that feeling of stepping into a place that has been left to be reclaimed by nature. The houses and buildings have just been left like their owners have just stepped out for a minute, but they never returned. It's a delicious setting, made even better by the fact that this town is out in the middle of nowhere and hasn't really been disturbed for 60 years. I loved it. It made for such a creepy and sad setting that had such a visual feel. I could see Silvertjarn in my mind so clearly.
The mystery was a super enjoyable aspect of this book too. I was so intrigued to see where it was going to go. I think the book did a great job of slipping in reveals and twists. It had a really good pace. I was curious throughout the whole thing to see where it was going to go, why all these people just disappeared, and what was going to happen.
I liked the characters. I don't know if there were any standouts, but I felt like they made a good team that did have some tension sprinkled throughout.
I wish there had been a little more documentary film in this. Our crew is scouting so they can work on a trailer, but there really wasn't any filming or mixed media aspect except for the very beginning.
I also really enjoyed the glimpses of the past that were sprinkled throughout the story. We got to see Silvertjarn in the months leading up to the disappearance from Alice's great-grandmother point of view. I was always excited to read another snippet of what was happening in the village in real time. Those chapters were a welcome addition to the story.
I didn't necessarily love who turned out to be (one of) the big bads. It's just a villain type I've seen many, many times in stories, and I was hoping for something different in The Lost Village. I wanted an explanation that I hadn't seen before, that would surprise me. There definitely were some surprising aspects of the story, things I wasn't expecting, but the villain just didn't do it for me.
I also found myself still having questions by the end of the book, and those questions directly related to that villain. It didn't give me enough reasons to buy into what happened and why it happened.
This book was a ride that I really enjoyed. It had an A+ setting and a mystery that kept me reading until the very end. It would make a great movie. I'm glad I got to read it.
The Atmosphere, Perfection! 

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