I’ve had this book on my ‘must read’ list for a while and was expecting a ‘can’t put it down’ type of read. Well, as it turns out, I could put it down very easily…and pick it up again without losing the thread. No jumping around from past to present in this book, just a straightforward story of a boy, Theo, who experiences a shocking start to his teens which impacts the rest of his life.
What I liked about the book was the way the author changes the narrating style so that you hear at first the voice of a youngster, then a young man, then a cynical grown up. I found it a slow start, an enjoyable middle and a proper ending which didn’t feel contrived (as many do).
I enjoyed the beautiful descriptions of art and furniture, but didn’t care for the gangster and drug parts of the plot (even though the story couldn’t exist without them). The characters and relationships are well drawn and you care about Theo even as he becomes more wayward.
My verdict? Not gripping or dazzling as described by some, but nonetheless, a satisfying read.