Book Review: The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer

By | March 1, 2015


Hello March! Winter is supposedly officially over and its time to embrace the insatiable beauty of spring, or so it feels! Though I’m a winter person myself I cannot help but be a bit excited at the prospect of iced lattes and the warmth of sunshine and I have just the caffeine drink to celebrate spring, pictured above and more about it later, for now let me stick to inflicting my opinion of one of my latest reads on my still faithful blog readers. Shall we? 

What made me reach out to this book is the paragraph on the back cover of the books narrator introducing his brother Simon who, in his own words, “In a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that.’ Ah, interesting. So will it be a story of a lingering ghost? It seemed to me like it was the case, and I loved the forwardness of the story-teller, hence I ended up reading it.

How was it? Well, to clarify one thing, it isn’t a ghost story, not at all. It’s about a young boy who loses his older brother and can basically never get over his loss until he is admitted into an institution. It breaks your heart, how a young person with so much prospect suffers so much its impossible for him to move on, becoming every parent’s worst nightmare.

The story is written in whatever Mathew, the boy who lost his brother, seems befitting and according to his circumstances and it made for a quite honest and realistic read but takes a bit too long to get to the heart of what matters. Its like sitting next to a distraught, rambling person, waiting patiently for him to spill out his story for you and explain what happened. The story is beautifully written, it must be said, but it somehow took a bit of time for me to finish even though it wasn’t too long, and two weeks later I still cannot put my finger on the reason why or if I liked it or not. It wasn’t the kind of book that keeps you engaged, perhaps because it drained me and, to be frank, scared me a little but there was something in there that made me plough through to the end which, like I expected, isn’t much of a happy ending. More like an accepting kind of ending which made me sadder still but really, how could there be another ending?

What I’m saying is the book isn’t for everyone and I wouldn’t recommend it as a happy holiday or a bed time read. Its more sinister, and will rack both emotions and fears nestling deep inside of yourself. If you are in a contemplative mood or in need to reflect on your own life and choices, then maybe you want to read it then.

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