I usually find myself propelled through a book because I can empathise with the characters or find some parallel to my own life. But in this case, my compulsion to continue reading was not borne from empathy for or a connection with the characters – far from it in fact. On many an occasion I found myself saying in my head, “No, don’t do that!”. I then asked myself why was I so hooked on this story and characters whose destiny seemed so pre-determined? The answer for me was Tusa’s stark and confronting writing style, one like I’ve never read before. I found his use of metaphors such as ‘the black worm holes of his eyes’ and ‘little cobwebs of grief’ both refreshing and haunting.
In this novel Tusa does not shy away from the harsh realities of the lives of some in the community. He poses the age old question of what’s right and wrong, and shows us how the answer to that question is different for each and every one of us, depending on the situation we’re in and our experiences and role models up to that point. A story about the darker side of the human psyche and the strength of the human spirit – one well worth reading.
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