I had seen so many people rave about The Shock of The Fall by Nathan Filer that I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I wish I was one of those people who seem to start the trend rather than follow others but with books, as there are so many available, it is easier and less time consuming to follow great reviews and advice than hunt out the next ‘must read’ yourself.
However, not all people think the same so I still try and reserve judgement in case I am that one person that didn’t ‘get it’, like the Twilight trilogy for example, *cowers away waiting for a bad reaction*.
For me The Shock of the Fall totally lived up to and even surpassed its surrounding hype. With the theme of mental health at its core I was wary how the author would handle what can be a very delicate subject. But it was clear that he knew his topic after working in this field for years.
The story centers around the unstable world of Matthew who descends into a mental illness. The way his story is told is both dark, touching and comical in parts that you don’t realise you have just devoured another chapter.
“I’ll tell you what happened because it will be a good way to introduce my brother. His name’s Simon. I think you’re going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that.”
We learn just pages in that his brother Simon dies but Nathan Filer manages to grab hold of your attention for so long to find out what happens. This is a mighty fine skill especially in today’s world where we have the attention span of a knat…wait what was I just saying?!
The mixture of different text fonts, drawings and writing styles as a reflection of his failing mental state is fantastic and really brings the story to life. I found myself even missing Matthew when I had to book the book down.
As his debut novel, winner of Costa Book of the Year Award 2013 and just a really decent sounding bloke Nathan Filer is one to watch and I just hope he is busy typing out his next novel!
Have you read the Shock of the Fall?
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