This was a bargain buy on Kindle and an intriguing short story which served as an excellent introduction to the author's work.
Right from the start we are introduced to the reason for the story that unfolds and how it has such a profound and disturbing effect upon both of the brothers in their individual reactions to the event that acts as a catalyst for the subsequent actions they take.
Once something of this magnitude has so rudely intruded itself on their lives, they are forever shaped and defined by the significance of it - although their equally troubled family life must surely play a part. The dialogue is very true to life, with humour and pathos in equal measure. The story is narrated through the eyes of the younger brother, who is unable to get the vision he sees out of his head and finds the images repeating over the years like a never-ending refrain. Yet he seems to be the more 'together' and balanced character of the two - whether from having more of a natural inclination to be serious and reflective or having become so because of the horrific scene he is subject to as a child. He views life as 'dependent on this fine balance. Too much weight on either side and it was all over..'In many ways we can all identify things in our own lives that have shifted our focus from what is perceived as 'normal'.
There is a desire to push past what has happened and simply get on with life as if it hadn't. When the elder brother later mourns the loss of apparent innocence by saying "Why couldn't we have stayed kids - it would have been so much simpler, wouldn't it?", he is forgetting (but soon reminded) that their childhood was far from idyllic anyway.
Eventually, they each find a path through this troubled history and a way to resolve, if not forget, the horror they witnessed. The present is real and tangible, they have relationships to maintain, and their own personal stories to encounter as the future unfolds.
This story leaves its own mark on the reader. It may be a reminder of shared childhood pranks or even horrors, shared confidences, issues of truthfulness and accurate story telling, possibly a pang of recognition for the bitter-sweet effect of memories on an adult mind. However it leaves you, it will leave you wanting to read more from this author.