LR#01: “The Boy That Never Was” by Karen Perry

01-PerryThis isn’t the style of fiction I’m usually drawn to. However, I’ve been widening my range over the past eighteen months and was keen to plunge into it’s pages.

And, wow, am I glad I did!

It begins in an explosive manner and I was hooked from the first pages. The drama unfolds as Harry and Robin, parents struggling to cope with the loss of their young son, each tell their version of events, past and current which have led from their grief to their current uneasy relationship.

Harry, an artist torn by guilt, is convinced he has seen his son – his dead son –  in a crowded Dublin street. Robin, weighed down by her own grief, worries at her husbands increasing isolation and despair.

The story is told by each character in alternate chapters. This works superbly as their tragedy is shown from each viewpoint and we learn of, and share in, their separate secrets, guilts, hope and fears.

Each character is well formed, the dialogue is sharp and direct, the scenes are beautifully crafted. The tale is told in a gripping and thrilling way; the tension is cranked up early on and does not relent. This is a real “page turner”.

It’s a magical thing when a book from an author new to you and despite your initial reservations, delivers with such force and leaves you craving for more.

Buying only one book this year? Make it this one.


My Rating: 4.0* out of 5.0*

PUBLICATION DATE: April 2014 (anticipated)

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