Amballore House is an ambitious first novel by Jose Thekkumthala. It is a book that breaks free of the traditional story telling mold as it gleefully defies categorization. Part family saga, part subtle horror, with a good dose of mythology and science fiction, Amballore House is a book that spans generations to encompass the plight of one family. Set in India in the 1960s and spanning far into the future, Amballore House is a book filled with the elements of many genres, from classic mythological storytelling, brooding horror, the usual science fiction staples of alien abduction. With a sometimes outrageous cast of characters, Thekkumthala provides his readers with a unique reading experience. One that won’t soon be forgotten.
Despite the dark and ominous cover, when I first cracked open Amballore House I thought I was reading the tale of a family saga, albeit a coyly written one filled with the exploits of Thoma, his much beleaguered wife Ann, and their numerous children. They are a poor family and Thekkumthala documents their plight well.
As the story progresses Thekkumthala builds onto the plot as he adds wild elements from various genres. Sometimes it leaves your head spinning especially when the timeline jumps back and forth. It often took me a while to figure out where I was, or what was so important about a particular scene, but Thekkumthala does enough to draw the reader in as he slowly weaves the web of his story.
While it is a primarily a horror novel Amballore House by Jose Thekkumthala is also an enduring tale of hope in the face of betrayal, death, and catastrophe as well as a family’s determination to persevere. I think Amballore House by Jose Thekkumthala has to be one of the most unique books I’ve read in 2016 so far.
This page was created by an City Book Review staff member.
|Page Count||364 pages|
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