Book Review: Insanity by Lauren Hammond

13557662Insanity by Lauren Hammond is the first book in the Asylum series. It is a suspense novel about an 18 year old girl who winds up in a mental institution, and of course, she is not crazy. She can’t be. There must be some mistake. Adelaide (the girl) must get back to her one true love, Damien, so that they can run away together and live happily ever after. This book is also set in around the late fifties, so there is a bit of a cultural difference with the treatment of women and the way people with mental illnesses were treated, but once you remember that it’s a different time period it’s pretty easy to get into the story.

When I first started reading this novel, I thought it was going to be bad. This was mainly because when you start reading the story things aren’t really explained and you’re just sort of thrown into it along with Adelaide, the narrator, and I remember thinking that this book was really weird when I started reading it. But then as I got into it, I kind of liked the experience at the beginning. It sort of made me feel like I was going crazy with Adelaide. It also draws you in, because as Adelaide starts to learn more things, so do you, so it’s sort of like you’re in it together. I will say that she is an unreliable narrator though, what with being in a mental institution, which is a whole other horror in itself. I was almost afraid to go down to the basement after reading this novel.

This novel also disturbed me a little bit, not that that’s a bad thing. But if you’re looking for a light romance novel, this is not it. But if you’re looking for an interesting novel that challenges how you see the world, this is definitely it. That’s what I mean by disturbed. It’s not so much the physical things that happen, but more psychological, and how we view what’s real and not real. I know that’s kind of cryptic but I don’t want to accidentally ruin the plot. This book also keeps you guessing until almost the very last page, and is very good at keeping you pulled into the story.

The cover of this novel is also done really well. It captures the eye and it also fits really well with the story. I like that even though you can see all of the model’s body on the cover, you can’t see her face. If you read this book you’ll see why that’s such a good fit for the novel.

All things considered, I liked this novel. I would recommend it to people who like suspense, and aren’t afraid to be a little uncomfortable when they read. That being said, there is a strong romance element in the novel, it’s just not the sole focus of the novel.