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Cheap tricks and shallow characters,
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This review is from: Follow Me Down (Kindle Edition)
I don't think I've disliked a book as much as Follow Me Down in a long, long time. Nor, in all my many years as a reader, do I think a novel has left me feeling angry with the writer. There are so many things to dislike about this novel that it's hard to know where to start. Adamma, the main character, is actually quite unlikable. I wanted to like her but it was hard to warm to her - what should have been a strong, confident young woman simply came across as someone who was arrogant, spoilt and somewhat stuck up. While I realise Crofton was supposed to be a school for the wealthy, even so she came over as somewhat spoilt - maybe this was because the author tried to glibly drop in the fact Adamma drove a Mercedes and enjoyed a number of other privileges. It just jarred with me.
Then there was the very spurious rape claim. I won't go into detail - but in the real world, getting drunk and waking up clothed but missing knickers wouldn't cause most people (in the absence of any further evidence) to assume a rape. I mean who hasn't lost things (including underwear) after a night on the razz! It was just very weak - and coming from a legal background myself, I couldn't buy into it. Nor could I buy into the later entry, without search warrant, by a DC into someone's house - again, in real life, this wouldn't happen. I'm sorry, but if a writer is going to dabble in rape/murder territory, then at least gem up on basic legal facts.
There were also a number of grammatical howlers and typos that eventually became annoying e.g. 'The sun was on my face but I couldn't summon the strength to move it'. Don't worry Adamma - I don't think anyone could; even Geoff Capes.
Finally, the twist at the end ... well, I felt short changed. It relied, utterly, on a bad grammar and bad narration. There were times, as I was reading the novel, where I felt there was an over-use of the third-person 'he'. At times it became confusing and sentences seemed garbled. I found myself thinking 'which 'he' is the writer referring to?'. Also, flicking back (once the twist was revealed) there was an inconsistency in narration - necessary in order for the writer to fool the reader. Okay, so it tricked the reader - but that inconsistency didn't make sense in retrospect. The author has literally tied herself in knots trying to avoid using names, which makes for clunky writing.
In conclusion, this book that was trying to be too clever for its own good. It never seemed to flow naturally - but perhaps that's because the author was attempting to shoehorn dialogue and events into a twist ending. For me, none of it worked and, as I said, I found myself incredibly irritated by the end.