Berenice: A Review
Berenice: A Review

Berenice is a gothic horror short story written by Edgar Allan Poe, a famous American writer and poet. A dictionary might be needed as an assist while reading. However, this guarantees that the short story is as beautifully written as it is gloomy and scary. It is a short story that reminds me of a psychological thriller movie and it is very entertaining.

The story is told through Egaeus’s point of view and set in the narrator’s gothic manor where he lives with his cousin, Berenice. Even though they grew up together, the narrator and his cousin are quite different for that he is mentally ill and buried in gloom and Berenice is graceful and full of energy. They finally get married. However, their marriage life does not go well as Berenice becomes more physically ill and Egaeus’s mental illness, too, gets worse and this leads the reader, along with Egaeus himself, to a shocking ending.

Berenice is written in first person point of view which shows the reader how unreliable one’s perspective is. In this case, Egaeus, as the narrator, is unreliable and cannot be trusted. This is crucial for the storytelling to use this kind of point of view because the reader can only see what the narrator sees and know what the narrator knows; this leads to the surprise at the end which gives me the same feeling I got at the end of a TV series called Sharp Objects. Nevertheless, Berenice is not all about the shocking ending. Egaeus’s tragic background and his mental illness are also as interesting, considering it might make the reader feel like there is something that is not right about the narrator.

The story is quite short and there is no main theme or any big message since it is a horror short story. The writer’s intention was to scare the reader and Poe did a successful job on that. As said above, it is like a psychological thriller movie which gives you a shocking surprise and if one is looking for a quick entertainment that is gloomy and scary, Berenice is a good horror short story to read.

To sum up, Berenice by Edgar Allan Poe is a gothic horror short story. The story is told through the narrator’s point of view which shows the reader how one’s perception cannot be trusted and this leads to a dreadful truth about Egaeus and his actions at the end. It might require a dictionary as an assist, but it is beautifully written and it is worth reading. It is quite short, scary, gloomy and entertaining.

Look at the moon, but do not guess what time it is.