The Cabin at the End of the World

The Cabin at the End of the World Summary

 “A tremendous book―thought-provoking and terrifying, with tension that winds up like a chain. The Cabin at the End of the World is Tremblay’s personal best. It’s that good.”  — Stephen King

The Bram Stoker Award-winning author of A Head Full of Ghosts adds an inventive twist to the home invasion horror story in a heart-palpitating novel of psychological suspense that recalls Stephen King’s Misery, Ruth Ware’s In a Dark, Dark Wood, and Jack Ketchum’s cult hit The Girl Next Door.

Seven-year-old Wen and her parents, Eric and Andrew, are vacationing at a remote cabin on a quiet New Hampshire lake. Their closest neighbors are more than two miles in either direction along a rutted dirt road.

One afternoon, as Wen catches grasshoppers in the front yard, a stranger unexpectedly appears in the driveway. Leonard is the largest man Wen has ever seen but he is young, friendly, and he wins her over almost instantly. Leonard and Wen talk and play until Leonard abruptly apologizes and tells Wen, "None of what’s going to happen is your fault". Three more strangers then arrive at the cabin carrying unidentifiable, menacing objects. As Wen sprints inside to warn her parents, Leonard calls out: "Your dads won’t want to let us in, Wen. But they have to. We need your help to save the world."

Thus begins an unbearably tense, gripping tale of paranoia, sacrifice, apocalypse, and survival that escalates to a shattering conclusion, one in which the fate of a loving family and quite possibly all of humanity are entwined. The Cabin at the End of the World is a masterpiece of terror and suspense from the fantastically fertile imagination of Paul Tremblay.

“Read Paul Tremblay's new novel, The Cabin at the End of the World, and you might not sleep for a week. Longer. It will shape your nightmares for months – that's pretty much guaranteed.” — NPR

“Gripping, horrifying, and mesmerizing.” — GQ

“A tour-de-force of psychological and religious horror.” —

“A blinding tale of survival and sacrifice.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Tremblay has a real winner here.” —

Book Reviews

GaGa who?

Good introduction to the author4 star

I picked up this book in the airport. First time I'd heard of him. I thought the book was great. Sure, there were a few times the narrative was lost, but all in all a solid story about what we do for those we love and nice twist to the age old, one person you love for the loves of many. Me and husband ended up having a great discussion after I finished and anything that sparks a convo is a great read.45


Exciting premise that wasn’t explored2 star

This book is fun to read. Suspense is set up well and it really gets you excited to see how it ends. Unfortunately, you will be left disappointed. The author sets up so many questions that aren’t answered and you will be left not caring about the plot or any characters. I think he writes well, and I have heard good things about other works of his which I am excited to give a chance25


Terrible!1 star

This book is so not good. Don’t waste your time or money.15

you gotta listen

Suspenseful4 star

Great read through the whole book. Only disappointment was the ending in my opinion. But we all differ and maybe everyone else will love the ending.45


Worth a read, looking for similar books4 star

Honestly any bad review(s) this received was because of the ending. There’s too much left unanswered for a perfect rating but I believe this book was worth the read. Very anticlimactic ending for how suspenseful the book was overall though.45

Bank of America_Knoxville

I feel so bad for Paul Tremblay - his work has always been masterful...until now :(2 star

A great writer, one of my favorites, actually. But this is his first published work where I couldn’t find even ONE character or plot development worth any emotional investment. I finished reading it of course — I can’t stand people who only finish books if they enjoy every single chapter or whatever, that’s not how literature (or narrative storytelling in general) works...but I digress. I mean to say I knew I was in for a very messy & far too unfocused story that couldn’t punctuate — or in many cases simply realize — more than a few of the MANY statements about our current world’s horrors that exist so casually on the fringes of our everyday lives. Tremblay isn’t taking on just one set of fundamentalists or extremists, he’s not writing this book to finger-wag the intolerant bigots who very much exist in larger numbers than we’d like to admit, (as the protagonists of this novel include two married gay men with an adopted daughter, who by the way is sadly the best and worst monkey wrench in this novel; you could almost unravel the mess entirely by omitting her character completely but then it’s maybe a novella at most, likely a short story). Tremblay doesn’t quite pull off the Kubrickian style when your comes to nuclear doomsday scenarios, psychology of warfare, as well as having your entire life be threatened or your known reality shattered in front of you within the events of a single day/evening wherein the nature of survival: fight or flight competes with a nagging panic about what it all means to “be” and how could either you OR the rest of the world be insane without realizing it until this very moment. These are broad strokes, and just the surface of very densely explored subjects in Stanley Kubrick’s filmography — typically with just one or two being the focus of a single project. Here in Tremblay’s latest novel, however, they’re littered throughout a jumbled sequence of events dressed up as a (MUCH) tamer version of Michael Haneke’s brilliant home-invasion horror film(s), “Funny Games.” You’re left with a sense of incompletion. The notion that you were about to maybe explore some interesting territory while the razor-thin plot premise played out the ONLY way any decent home-invasion-horror story can, (which is sort of a spoiler I guess?)25


Ending is terrible2 star

I think leaving an open ended ending is a very lazy writing technique. It leaves the reader unsatisfied. This could have been a good story if there was not so much description and the plot moved a little faster. And the ending was terrible. Do not waste your money on this book. It took me 4 months to read and I’m a fast reader. Just not that interesting and now severely disappointed25

Amela dfw

Worst book I ever read1 star

Terrible story plot. 0 intrigue. Absolutely no climax. Awful awful awful conclusion. How can a book be THIS bad?? Why is this classified as mystery? There is no mystery in this book whatsoever. Waste of time.15


Disappointed2 star

The book was very suspenseful but the ending not rewarding. It was a cliffhanger that leaves nobody in suspense. The little girl is the only character with depth in this book.25


So disappointing1 star

This book had so much potential. Was left floundering at the end.....Wen deserved more.lindasreview15

Other Books by Paul Tremblay

A Head Full of Ghosts


A Head Full of Ghosts
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