Author: Alastair Bruce
Publisher: The Clerkenwell Press 2015
This book was bought for me as a present for Christmas last year. I must say it wasn’t one that I would have necessarily bought for myself but I am very glad that I have read it.
‘He is a man who lied, who told a story, a wild, fanciful story, about the death of a child, a hard unyielding story. It it that, he finds, that he hates the most. The story that was told.’
In 1983 Paul Hyde, aged ten, dies falling from a ledge in the mountains of the Karoo. His older brother Peter, who falls at the same time, survives but loses all memory of the event. The youngest brother, John, is the only witness.
Many years later, John is living in London. He and his wife Rachel, who knows nothing of the tragedy of his past and nothing of his family, make plans to have children of their own. Their life together is disrupted when Peter arrives in London and claims his memory is returning. Pulled back in spite of himself, John returns to South Africa and the home he grew up in.
His return makes him question his recollection of the tragedy. Can we ever be certain of events that happened that far in the past, certain we have not completely changed their meaning and our part in them?
It was a bit of a slow starter and I kept turning to my partner and saying ‘this is a really weird book!’ but by the end I was hocked and was trying to work out how all of the ‘trickery’ was happening.
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