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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning..
I was totally gripped by this book from page 1. The story seems simple...a journey through mental illness..sounds dire?? Not at all!! The writers style is beautiful, full of pathos and humour and pithy philosophical insights. Lots of quotes to highlight. Recommended without reservation.
Published 5 months ago by Mel R

versus
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars stick with it.
Thought provoking. Strange but interesting.Initially thought it was going to be hard work but finally did not want to put it down.
Published 5 months ago by sunshine


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4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful insight i, 10 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
Very moving and honest glimpse of how mental illness effects not only an individual but their family and friendships. A great first novel by Nathan filer
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!, 10 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Paperback)
Absolutely brilliant book. Full of emotion and it really makes you think. Would especially recommend this to anyone with an interest in mental health.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Really thought provoking read, 9 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
I got into this read straight away from the start and it didn't take long to read. This story has been written in a very clever way giving a real insight into someone with a mental health issue as well as being very funny at times. Really touching at times. Well worth a read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling read., 9 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
memorable. sad and very believable. difficult to say I enjoyed it, but I would definitely recommend it. Well done for creating a fascinating story.
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4.0 out of 5 stars interesting, but frustrating, 9 Mar 2014
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Gillian (HEXHAM, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
I did like this book, but it's not going up there with my favourites. It was clever, and I guess I know more now than I did before about what it's like to live with schizophrenia... But that doesn't make it a great story
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5.0 out of 5 stars Low 5?, 9 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
After some debate we have given it a 5. That means it might actually be a 4.5 but that is still quite good. Anyway it's a book....
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!, 9 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
I gave it 5 stars because it is a really thoughtful story with such a look into mental illnesses. It gives you an idea of what schizophrenia is like.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Truly touching, 9 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
Part of me balked a little at the opening of this novel - the 'world as seen through eyes of disturbed/damaged child' trope is wearing a little thin and seems to me to be a rather easy way of quirking up a first person narrative voice. I stuck with it though and in the end I'm glad I did; 'Shock of the Fall' is a grimly tender piece of work and Filer has done a pretty exceptional job of capturing the sadness and struggles of his protagonist's situation. Clever use of temporal dislocations, focussed style and the self-referential nature of Matt's unfolding story set this novel above many that I've read. Truly touching in places.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing writing, 9 Mar 2014
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
This is an amazing book, so different from anything I've read before. Challenging? yes; harrowing? sometimes; superbly written? absolutely. Only a very clever writer can flit about within a timeline and still manage to keep his readers on track. It is definitely a page-turner, but not, in my view, because of the 'plot' as it were, but because of the ingenious way it is written. It is refreshing to find a good book which doesn't follow convention, ie with a beginning, middle and end. Full marks Nathan Filer for a scintillating read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A poigant and challenging read - but a thoroghly worthy winner, 9 Mar 2014
By 
Miss J. M. Austin (Surrey, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Shock of the Fall (Kindle Edition)
My own family has been touched by mental illness, with a sister who experiences schizophrenia, and a father (now deceased) who had severe depression, so this for me was a much read, and a poignant one at that, having recently re-established contact with said sister.

It was for me then a somewhat difficult and challenging read, written as it is from the perspective of the experiencer. I choose to use this word rather than sufferer because of its negative conations. We are introduced to Matt and his brother Simon, who has Downs syndrome at the beginning of the book, on a typical seaside family holiday. The title of the book comes from what happens next when Matt encounters a young girl who is burying her doll - it later turns out this doll is symbolic of the girls mother who has herself recently died. Matt reaches out to comfort the girl and falls, and the story goes on from there. I will not say too much more as it would only act as a spoiler.

The book though focusses very much on the effects that Matt's illness has on him - its symptoms and its causes, most of which only become clear towards the end. This is why I found it as times such uncomfortable reading, but I persevered and am glad that I did.

There is no happy ending for Matt, and he does not get miraculously better, but he does in his own way come to terms with what happened to his brother and the role that he played in this. In the process of doing this he also manages to mend relationships with the rest of his family and help them.

I can see exactly why this book won the Costa Prize and cannot think of a more worthy winner. This for me would also unhesitatingly be 5 stars.
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The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer
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