“Protest woke in her eyes and throat, but something covered her face, smothering her in a sweet stench.”
This is, for me, one of those rare occasions where I preferred the movie to the book. I found the film terrifying and terrific, playing on those inner commitment phobic fears that make child bearing seem, to be, to be a scary undertaking.
Let’s face it, if anyone was going to hook up with a hot looking devil, it would be me ;) So perhaps my reticence is warranted.
But enough about me, back to the novel. I really wish I hadn't seen the film, so that the impact would be fresh and the thrills more intense. There was something just a little lukewarm and I can only put it down to the fact that I knew what would transpire before it did.
The apartment building is still creepy, as are the neighbours - droopy boobs and chocolate moose and all. I wondered about the sub-text also. Here, as in The Stepford Wives, another novel of Levin's that I have recently read, we have a modern woman enslaved by her marriage. Her control is taken away by a man eager to re-claim the dominant masculine status quo of the past. That did seem quite revolting and I wish that aspect were more of a foreign conceit, but sadly, the battle of the sexes continues apace.
What is really interesting is the internal dilemma and change that the couple's marriage undergoes after that one trippy night where the poor drugged wife endures a rather fruitful coupling that she could never have anticipated, despite her previous underhanded attempts to get pregnant. I think the movie made much more of a visceral impact, particularly in this regard. In the film, you , the viewer are being attacked, whilst in the novel there is a greater sense of remove and dialogue with Jackie Kennedy to distract.
4 out of 5 drugged desserts and tannis root smells are a sure sign you should move.