Book Review: Five Nights at Freddy's: The Silver Eyes by Scott Cawthon & Kira Breed-Wrisley

by - 12:49:00 AM

Title: Five Nights at Freddy's: The Silver Eyes
Author: Scott Cawthon & Kira Breed-Wrisley
Genre: YA Horror
Pages: 214
Release Date: 16 December 2015

From Goodreads: "It’s been exactly ten years since the murders at Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza, and Charlotte (Charlie for short) has spent those ten years trying to forget. Her father was the owner of Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza and the creator of its four adult-sized animatronic animals, and now Charlie is returning to her hometown to reunite with her childhood friends on the anniversary of the tragedy that ripped their town apart. Curiosity leads Charlie and her friends back to the old pizza place, and they find it hidden and sealed, but still standing. They discover a way inside, but things are not as they once were: the four mascots that delighted and entertained them as children have changed. The animatronic animals have a dark secret, and a murderous agenda."

Halloween is almost upon us and what better time of the year than this to read a super creepy book about murderous robots?! I'm a huge fan of the Five Nights at Freddy's game series, and with the recent release of Sister Location, I figured it was a good time to pick up this companion novel. I came into this book looking for a book that was at least relatively close to the game series with some really scary elements and even a bit of FNAF lore weaved in and I did get that, but also a small slice of disappointment.

This book follows Charlie, the daughter of the owner of Freddy Fazbear's Pizza and creator of the famous four: Freddy, Bonnie, Chica, and Foxy. She is returning to her hometown after ten years for the anniversary of the death of one of her friends that tore apart the small town she lived in. Once she returns, Charlie is reunited with her old group of friends and they all decide to pay a visit to Freddy's once more. Even though the building has been entombed inside a half-finished mall, they are able to find a way inside the abandoned restaurant. But things aren't as they used to be, and the animatronics that they once loved as children have a new murderous agenda.

Let me start this off by saying that if you're unfamiliar with the world of FNAF, I don't recommend that you pick up this book. There are quite a few references to things that take place in the game series that will be lost on those who have no prior knowledge about the world. That being said, as someone who is a fan of the series and has a fair amount of knowledge when it comes to the lore, I enjoyed this book more than I thought I would! Initially, I was hesitant to pick it up just because I was unsure how well it would sit with the lore, and while I believe it is not cannon but just a story set within the world of FNAF, it was still a pretty decent story.

One of the biggest problems that I had with this story was the characters. Not only were there way too many to keep up with, they were all pretty one-dimensional. If I had to say there was one character that had any sort of development, it would have to be Charlie. I didn't feel like I was able to connect to any of the seven friends in the group, or even the adults for that matter. They all just felt like they were placed there to have characters in the story. Another issue was that they all had incredibly similar names which made it hard to tell them all apart. There was Charlie, John, Jessica, Jason, Marla, Lamar, and Carlton, which is a lot more than I expected and lead to quite a bit of confusion as I read this book. The point of view would frequently change to various characters, and it was hard to tell who was who at times. But I do have a theory as to why the characters were so...bland. If one thing is true about the FNAF universe, it's full of theories.

I believe that the "characters" were meant to be background to the real character: Freddy Fazbear's Pizza. This restaurant is the main part of (almost) all of the games in one way or another, so it wouldn't be surprising if this was the real main character of the story. With every visit to Freddy's, there is so much detail that is brought to the readers. You get to read about the drawings on the wall, the tables, the stages and lights, the animatronics, and everything in between. The atmosphere that is built around Freddy's is so consistently creepy and well-written that you can almost feel like you're in there with Charlie and the rest of the group. There is so much more to Freddy's than you think and it's something that constantly develops as the story goes on, making it the best part of the entire book.

The writing was better than I expected for a video game spin-off book. I believe that Scott had more to do with the scenes that were set inside Freddy's and that Kira Breed-Wrissley focused more on the scenes outside of the restaurant and character development. I personally enjoyed the parts inside of Freddy's more, simply because that was where the potential scares were. While it wasn't the best writing ever, it certainly gave me the creeps at some parts and I found myself constantly trying to get back to the parts inside of the restaurant. Because this is called Five Nights at Freddy's: The Silver Eyes, I expected a large part of the book to be set inside of Freddy's, but it felt like there were hardly any scenes set there. Thankfully, the scenes that were there were significantly creepy and should be satisfying to any fan of the FNAF series. Something that I found hard to look over were the grammatical errors that were more common than I would have liked. I definitely feel like this book could have gone through a few more revisions before being released just to focus on the simple mistakes that were made.

I enjoyed that there were some potential tie-ins to the actual lore of FNAF, such as the missing children and who Purple Guy was. While I'm unsure as to if this book is supposed to provide answers to the many questions that the FNAF series provides, it's certainly nice to have the option to make connections between characters in the book and in the game. I also really liked how much detail was put into describing the animatronics from how they looked after ten years to how robotic their movements were. It amped up the creep factor and just gave me the impression that, again, the main character was Freddy Fazbear's Pizza and the authors really wanted to make the location shine with how much detail that was put into it.

While this book wasn't exactly perfect, I did enjoy it for what it was. As a fan of the game series, this was a decent pick up to get my FNAF fix in book form without having to play the game and get spooked by all of the jump scares! If you set aside any negative criticisms you may have as a reader and read the book as just a fun little spin off, you'll enjoy it as a creepy read that is perfect for the Halloween season.

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