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A dark, dark tale
on 10 November 2012
When a series of events ends with the accidental death of Martyn Pig's father, Martyn decides he has two choices; risk telling the police what happened and hope they believe him, or do his best to cover up the death and hope no one finds out. Needless to say, Martyn chooses the harder of the two and what follows is a dark tale of what can happen when the truth runs away from you and the lies take over.
As usual with Brooks, this is a well written, thought provoking tale, with a storyline that keeps you guessing. There's also a pretty surprising twist in the tale, which I thought was clever, but the main problem for me was the characters themselves. Martyn, Martyn's father, Alex (Martyn's best friend), Dean (Alex's boyfriend), Martyn's aunt - none of them were likeable. And I found it incredibly difficult to believe that a 14 year old boy would be able to get away with what is essentially manslaughter. Much of Martyn's behaviour throughout the book also seems to teeter on the edge of some sort of mental illness (possibly schizophrenia). He has long conversations with what appears to be a voice (or voices) in his head and deals with events in a very cold, detached, and calculated way. Only when it seems that he may have been found out does he show any kind of remorse, but even this is short-lived when he realises the police can't really pin anything specific on him.
Overall there's no escaping that this is very well written, but the subject matter and tone left me feeling more than a little uneasy and slightly depressed.