Seventeen-year-old Tark knows what it is to be powerless. But Okiku changed that. A restless spirit who ended life as a victim and started death as an avenger, she’s groomed Tark to destroy the wicked. But when darkness pulls them deep into Aokigahara, known as Japan’s suicide forest, Okiku’s justice becomes blurred, and Tark is the one who will pay the price…
I may have loved The Girl From the Well, but I was seriously fanning over The Suffering. This book was far creepier than the first and reminded me of my favorite Japanese survival horror games.
This book is written all in Tark’s point of view. Though I liked the format of the first book, the second book’s format was perfect. The first gave us a better understanding of Okiku. The second book gave us an understanding of Tark as well as their growing relationship from the events of the first book. If you’ve read the first book and didn’t like the format, then there are no worries with this one.
I mentioned this before, but this book reminds me of my favorite Japanese horror games: Kuon and Fatal Frame 2. If you ever played both games or at least one of them, you might be hinted at what happens in this book. Add in the horror of the actual Aokigahara (suicide forest) and you have a good mix of horror.
The drama between Tark and Okiku isn’t overshadowed so much as isn’t important in the scheme of the book. The book deals more with sacrifice, good vs. evil, and making your own choices. All that follows makes the book exciting. I was putting it down only because I didn’t want it to end. I still don’t want their adventures to end.