“She’s known sadness. That’s what it is. I only just thought that as I wrote it. She’s known sadness, and it has made her kind.” – Nathan Filer.
I have had this book sitting on my bedside table for approximately a year now and on top of it I have just piled more and more books as I buy them, meaning that it was taking a while to get down to this one. It appears that for every book I read, two more I buy. Then a few weeks ago my class in tutor period was dedicated to books and my tutor, a psychology teacher, recommended The Shock of the Fall.
When I bought the book I didn’t have much idea what it was about except for the fact that a character, Simon, was going to die and I saw that it had won an award. So, at my teacher’s recommendation I rearranged my stack of books, ensuring that The Shock of the Fall was going to be read this month.
This book did not disappoint.
I love the, well, messiness of the narration as it skips from one point in time to another and from one place to another, and I enjoyed how the font changed every now and then so that you can identify when he’s at a computer, or using his typewriter, or someone has written him a letter. The format is beautiful, though this is hardly surprising coming from someone who loves epistolary novels.
It was also a very intriguing read. Every now and then Filer would release more details and we’d see characters for a small section, not really expecting their return, but then there they are again. Even our narrator doesn’t expect to see them.
Furthermore, I love books which are aware of mental illnesses because nowadays I know so many people that suffer from one thing or another while other people remain completely oblivious to how other people are suffering. On this subject, whenever I do read books in which characters have mental illnesses, it is usually focused on depression, so it is lovely to have a more unique perspective into mental illness as there are so many different types and people often forget this diversity.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone and I am very glad that I finally got round to reading it. I would rate this book a 5/5.
“Reading is a bit like hallucinating.”