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Rosemary's Baby (1967)

by Ira Levin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Rosemary's Baby (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,6091382,454 (3.82)278
Fiction. Horror. HTML:

Now an NBC miniseries starring Zoe Saldana

Rosemary Woodhouse and her struggling actor husband, Guy, move into the Bramford, an old New York City apartment building with an ominous reputation and mostly elderly residents. Neighbors Roman and Minnie Castevet soon come nosing around to welcome the Woodhouses to the building, and despite Rosemary's reservations about their eccentricity and the weird noises that she keeps hearing her husband takes a special shine to them.

Shortly after Guy lands a plum Broadway role, Rosemary becomes pregnant, and the Castavets start taking a special interest in her welfare. As the sickened Rosemary becomes increasingly isolated, she begins to suspect that the Castevets' circle is not what it seems...

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… (more)
  1. 41
    The Sentinel by Jeffrey Konvitz (jseger9000)
    jseger9000: The stories are quite different, but the books share similar themes. Both books are '70's religious shockers about a young woman moving into a new apartment, set in New York.
  2. 20
    The Devil's Own by Janet Louise Roberts (Litrvixen)
    Litrvixen: Both are about a young woman whom a cult wants to get pregnant with a demons child
  3. 10
    The Case Against Satan by Ray Russell (SomeGuyInVirginia)
  4. 00
    The Sand Men by Christopher Fowler (ShelfMonkey)
  5. 01
    The Mephisto Waltz by Fred Mustard Stewart (SomeGuyInVirginia)
  6. 02
    Son of Rosemary by Ira Levin (KayCliff)
1960s (20)
1970s (499)
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English (124)  Danish (3)  Spanish (2)  French (2)  Italian (1)  Hebrew (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (134)
Showing 1-5 of 124 (next | show all)
First thing you need to know about this book is that it is slow burning horror. We follow young couple, Rosemary and Guy, as they move into flat in the building full of mystery and given a wide berth by majority of New Yorkers. They meet loving old couple next door and very soon mysterious events start to take place.

Some people would say that Rosemary is a dull character. I would not say dull, I would say she is average person from that time and age. She married a man she loves and she wants to have kids (I do understand this might be a little bit weird for this age) - she gave up her career and decided to invest herself into being a mother but she is not dimwit in any way. For this time and age where people are rarely talking to each other and mostly do not know their neighbors (especially in city areas) story presents quite a different society. Story takes place when neighbor was seen as a friend and a helper. Especially older people - even if sometimes they can be seen as tedious etiquette said that one should always be polite and considerate with them.

So when this loving older couple starts to become more and more nosy and partaking in Rosemary's life she has no other way out than to "weather it out" so to speak. Unfortunately this will lead to rather unwanted events. Rosemary shows to be very capable to connect the dots and contact people she trusts to help her - but when walls of isolation keep closing in her desperation and feeling of utter betrayal start to take the best of her.

I like the way story brews from Rosemary meeting the neighbors, strange behavior of her husband to her pregnancy followed by some very weird events and accidents happening to people Rosemary used to know. Author constantly balances on that thread that separates normal from crazy - but if all around are crazy is the observer perhaps the only sane one? The calm tone of the novel, presenting events as if they were the most normal - this is the true horror.

Ending was little bit unexpected for me but I assume that crazed up Rosemary had no other option but to embrace her maternal feelings (no matter how weird this might be).

Recommended to fans of horror stories. ( )
  Zare | Jan 23, 2024 |
I liked it but I'm glad that it's over. ( )
  blueskygreentrees | Jan 20, 2024 |
Rosemary's Baby is a 1967 horror novel by American writer Ira Levin; it was his second published book. It sold over 4 million copies, "making it the top bestselling horror novel of the 1960s." The high popularity of the novel was a catalyst for a "horror boom", and horror fiction would achieve enormous commercial success in the 1970s and 1980s.

A young wife comes to believe that her offspring is not of this world. Waifish Rosemary Woodhouse and her struggling actor husband Guy move to a New York City apartment building with an ominous reputation and odd neighbors Roman and Minnie Castavet. When Rosemary becomes pregnant she becomes increasingly isolated, and the diabolical truth is revealed only after Rosemary gives birth.

Could a satanic plot be involved? Perhaps. Or Rosemary could just be paranoid.

Rosemary’s Baby tells of a young woman living in New York City who becomes pregnant and starts to believe that her husband and the neighbors at her apartment complex want to steal her baby after it’s born. The book is told in third person limited, past tense, from Rosemary’s perspective. And it's frightening.

Full of themes of hysteria and obsession and religious fervor, no wonder this book caught the zeitgeist in the late 1960s/early 1970s.

It's a bonafide classic. ( )
  ryantlaferney87 | Dec 8, 2023 |
If I were glib, I'd say this book also serves as a How To Guide to Gaslighting. The descriptions and brevity keep it from being repetitive, as over and over again this poor woman has her rational and reasonable complaints shot down as baby brain. And in a larger, philosophical sense, that doubles as a commentary on the disposability of women & their struggles.

I do wish he would've gone more in depth on some of the religious questions--especially so soon after JFK's assassination Is God Dead? Time magazine cover. He doesn't really go that much into Rosemary's changing religious views, which I think could've been a nice allegory for the times and the overall horror of the story. It also has some bizarre racial asides; namely Rosemary's constant internal monologue that she's a White oppressor whenever she encounters a Negro.

Still, it holds up, is short, and is still influential 50 years after first being published. And as a bonus, if you read the book instead of watching the film, you don't have to be reminded of Roman Polanski. ( )
  JuntaKinte1968 | Dec 6, 2023 |
Does a really great job of seeding suspicions in the mind of the reader along the way, even as the doubts of our protagonist are entirely justified. The setup for the bait & switch with Rosemary's baby is much more subtle here than in the movie adaptation, giving you plenty of reason to worry with her. Worth a read even if you've seen the film.
Good narration. ( )
  A.Godhelm | Oct 20, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 124 (next | show all)
Met de regelmaat van de klok verschijnen de herdrukken van dit boek, dat ook verfilmd is (en nog steeds vertoond wordt). Een jong echtpaar krijgt een flat toegewezen in een oud romantisch flatgebouw in New York, waarover verhalen gaan als zouden er veel zelfmoorden plaatsvinden en heksen en gifmengers wonen. Ze trekken zich hier niets van aan en voelen er zich gelukkig tot de vrouw, Rosemary, plotseling in verwachting raakt. Deze zwangerschap verloopt moeizaam en ze gaat aan de hand van allerlei gebeurtenissen eraan twijfelen of de buren (en ook haar man) die haar met allerlei zorgjes omringen toch niet aan hekserij doen. Het verhaal eindigt dan ook als ze een baby heeft gekregen die als tegenhanger van Christus, de zoon van Satan zou zijn. Nog steeds een boeiend verhaal, maar minder griezelig dan de film. Duidelijke druk op grauw papier.
added by karnoefel | editNBD / Biblion
 

» Add other authors (67 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Levin, Iraprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bacon, PaulCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Beckett, RicheyIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kauppi, KaijaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Miyamoto, KennethDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
"As for the desirability of cheerfulness during pregnancy, this should follow naturally from the fact that you are well and are approaching what will prove to be (although you may not appreciate it now) the most permanently satisfying event in your life. Do not think, however, though you devote all your days to laughter, or all your nights to symphony concerts, that your child will be one bit cheerier or one whit more musical because of it. No, his mental characteristics are more deeply rooted than that ..."
Nicholson J. Eastman, M.D.
Expectant Motherhood
Dedication
Completed in August 1966, in Wilton, Connecticut, and dedicated to Gabrielle
First words
Rosemary and Guy Woodhouse had signed a lease on a five-room apartment in a geometric white house on First Avenue when they received word, from a woman named Mrs. Cortez, that a four-room apartment in the Bramford had become available.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Fiction. Horror. HTML:

Now an NBC miniseries starring Zoe Saldana

Rosemary Woodhouse and her struggling actor husband, Guy, move into the Bramford, an old New York City apartment building with an ominous reputation and mostly elderly residents. Neighbors Roman and Minnie Castevet soon come nosing around to welcome the Woodhouses to the building, and despite Rosemary's reservations about their eccentricity and the weird noises that she keeps hearing her husband takes a special shine to them.

Shortly after Guy lands a plum Broadway role, Rosemary becomes pregnant, and the Castavets start taking a special interest in her welfare. As the sickened Rosemary becomes increasingly isolated, she begins to suspect that the Castevets' circle is not what it seems...

.

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Rosemary Woodhouse and her struggling actor-husband, Guy, move into the Bramford, an old New York City apartment building with an ominous reputation and only elderly residents. Neighbours Roman and Minnie Castavet soon come nosing around to welcome them; despite Rosemary's reservations about their eccentricity and the weird noises that she keeps hearing, her husband starts spending time with them. Shortly after Guy lands a plum Broadway role, Rosemary becomes pregnant, and the Castavets start taking a special interest in her welfare; as the sickened Rosemary becomes increasingly isolated, she begins to suspect that the Castavets' circle is not what it seems.

See also the Wikipedia article.
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