Thursday, 9 February 2017

January Book Review: Out of the Dark - Adele Geras

Welcome to my little space on the internet, today I'm reviewing a book.  I think I've mentioned before that I really enjoy the Quick Reads titles, they only cost a £1 and are all completely different so no matter what genre floats your boat you should find something.  Mum and I usually buy a couple each and swap and then pass them onto the hospital.  Sometimes I hire them from the library.  Last month I took out on loan Out of the Dark by Adele Geras.

Synopsis in my own words;
This novella tells the story of Rob Stone disfigured by war trying to blend in with society and live a normal life after the harrowing events of the First World War.  He is haunted by the ghost of his Captain and struggles with a broken heart.  Rob focuses his attention on finding the Captain's family to return a family photograph, and hopes in turn to calm his own mind.

Photo courtesey of Goodreads website
I liked that Geras did not dwell on Rob's time in the trenches, she sets up his before story in just a few pages but it wasn't rushed so we are able to understand why he would want his life to return to the way it was before, a handsome man with a good job courting a pretty girl.

I have seen it criticised in being unoriginal with giving us the reasons why Rob went to war.  I agree but then Geras is only telling the truth, these men and boys went to war thinking it would be short, they were fighting for King and Country and would return as heroes.  They were of course heroes, but we shall never forget that so many didn't return and it was anything but a short war.

One reviewer criticised the staccato sentences, and to be fair they are short and this can be a little off putting.  However all the Quick Reads I have read have been written in this style and once you find the rhythm it's not a problem.  Also the books are written as easy reads.  Quick Reads sets out to dispel the myth that books are boring, difficult, itimidating or a novel is too long.  It is as simple as "getting people to read."

Despite it only being 78 pages, Geras manages beautifully to capture the character of Rob and the rest of the cast, the details of his mask and the city where he lives.  This is heart-warming story with an uplifting ending.

Creative Blessings.  x


Linda Simpson said...

Thanks for sharing.
Linda xxx

dianne said...

Well you sold it to me x You have made it sound just like my kind of book