Review: Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin (1967)


My Rating: 5 stars                Read:  2/1/2017


  • My Lifetime Challenge (1967)
  • My Horror Challenge


I read this for my Lifetime Challenge (1967). I read this book ages ago and, of course, have seen the movie several times. So I knew every inch of this plot. Nevertheless, it was a pleasure to read it again (and I’m not the sort who reads books twice).

There were some details in the book that don’t come across in the film, and that I’d forgotten from when I read the book so long ago. But mainly, it’s just a pleasurable read, not overly long-winded like some horror novels of the 80s, and it’s steeped in such realism. The sense of 1960’s New York is acute. The story is so perfectly creepy, and all the more so for being understated. I love how maternal Rosemary is, constantly thinking about, or talking to, the baby when she’s pregnant. And Guy is utterly, realistically, charmingly repellent.

It’s not easy to write great horror and this is definitely in the top five horror novels of all time, as far as I’m concerned. Brilliant.

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