Thursday, 6 November 2014

ARC Review ~ Alice and the Fly by James Rice

Alice and the FlyPaperback received form the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: January 15th 2015

Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton

Description:This is a book about phobias and obsessions, isolation and dark corners. It's about families, friendships, and carefully preserved secrets. But above everything else it's about love. Finding love - in any of its forms - and nurturing it.

Miss Hayes has a new theory. She thinks my condition's caused by some traumatic incident from my past I keep deep-rooted in my mind. As soon as I come clean I'll flood out all these tears and it'll all be ok and I won't be scared of Them anymore. The truth is I can't think of any single traumatic childhood incident to tell her. I mean, there are plenty of bad memories - Herb's death, or the time I bit the hole in my tongue, or Finners Island, out on the boat with Sarah - but none of these are what caused the phobia. I've always had it. It's Them. I'm just scared of Them. It's that simple.

My Opinion

This was a strange read for me and not what I was expecting. It both had me wanting to read on, while at the same time something just didn't connect with me.

I liked the start, it was intriguing and I found myself flying through the pages rapidly. As well as that I liked the mystery that was created from the transcripts. I thought they were used cleverly so that the reader got an insight into what the other characters' thoughts and feelings were, which you otherwise wouldn't have seen. It was also the main reason for me getting to the end--I wanted to know what Greg had done.

However, saying that, even though the start intrigued me, I did find myself getting bored of the writing style. It was fresh and different at the start, but as the book progressed I started to feel disconnected. For me there wasn't enough speech and character development outside of Greg--something which was hard to do because it is written like a journal. Also, the fact that I didn't connect with Greg also hindered my reading. I can understand his issues but I thought more would have been made of his fears/episodes, and overall I just felt very distance from the book--there wasn't enough tension for me as it all seemed a bit monotone.

Overall, I'm not really sure what I make of this read. There's something weirdly intriguing about it even though I found it hard to engage with. I'm still not quite sure what went on at the end, and parts did feel a little disjointed or not fully tied up to give a satisfying end, but it does make you think. It wouldn't be top of my list to recommend, but I definitely wouldn't discourage anyone from giving it a go.

1 comment:

  1. You make an interesting point about dialogue. I've been thinking about this recently and how it works (or should work) in a first-person narrative. It's a tricky thing to pull of, especially in a diary form like this. I recently interviewed the author (Interview with James Rice) and I wish I'd asked about this now. I think it makes for an interesting discussion point.


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