Title: The Fifth Bedroom
Author: Alex Bell
In: The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories by Women (Marie O’Regan)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Ghosts, Horror
Dates read: 6th November 2020
Format: Short story
5th sentence, 74th page: And when that happens, love – or what passes for love – dies too.
Chloe is bitter about the past and the accident that tore down her life. So she’s moved to her own home to lick her wounds in private. But the non-existent fifth bedroom bell keeps ringing and she just can’t seem to find that peace she so deeply desires…
Yeah. I really shouldn’t have read this short story at dusk. While the wind was blowing through my house. And the wind chimes hanging in my window were going mad. Talk about mood-setting…
This was a really creepy story. There is something about bitterness that seems to be more terrifying than anger or sadness. It’s like a disease that eats someone from inside. The fact that Chloe’s bitterness leads to her sad ending was intense and really, really sad. It may not have quite ended the way that I anticipated… but it was still creepy and a reminder to let go of the past.
Finishing this short story left me feeling seriously disturbed. And uncomfortable. And just plain not ready to go to sleep. I may have poured myself a big glass of wine and taken a pretty big gulp after finishing this. It left me feeling that unsettled…