Monday, 11 November 2013

Book review

I found this book, The Dead Fathers Club by Matt Haig, at a book exchange. This is where you bring a book and swap it for a different one. Not exactly a second hand bookshop, as sometimes there will be no money changing hands. A swap shop. The customer gets credit for books brought in and some book exchanges allow that credit to accumulate.

So I picked this novel by Matt Haig. It is his second novel and it appears that his first was very well received.

This is actually a young adult or teenage book. Not really intended for adults. But it was a light read for non-thinking time.
The style is modern and engaging. Punctuation adds to this effect. It is set in the present day.
The characters are well drawn. The writer is very accomplished indeed. It is the people rather than the scenes that are important to the story. The voice is a teenager's perspective.

What is the story? A boy's father has recently died in a car accident. The family runs a small pub in England and lives upstairs. The boy is an only child, about fourteen years old. He sees his father's ghost who talks to him and gives him instructions. Things do not go well. The adolescent boy grows emotionally, due to his skewed perceptions and a series of events.

Would I recommend The Dead Fathers Club? Not generally. I feel a teenager could become depressed if they read this book twice, although there is much to discuss and consider. Deep soul searching. Interpretations of love and values. If you have a host of bad memories then it is disturbing, worrying. If you are vibrant and happy it would be interesting and light. Events in this book do not lead to a happy outcome.

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