Tuesday 15 April 2014

Shock of the fall - review

The shock of the fall by Nathan Filer

The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer


Matthew has a mental illness that “sounds like a snake” and this is his story. Filer is a mental health nurse and now a Costa book winner and what a book, a well-deserved win. Filer obviously understands Schizophrenia and this neither mythologises or demonises the illness but gives Matthew space to tell his own story, in his own way. At the end of the book there is a Q&A and Filer says that his vision for the book would be a pile of untidy, different sized, papers, held together with string, paperclips and staples. The book is in a variety of fonts, to represent computer, letters, and typewritten parts and the few pictures as Matthew tells his story, in his own time, with constant interruptions. This is also a story about grief and family.:

I’ll tell you what happened because it will be a good way to introduce my brother. His name’s Simon. I think you’re going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that

I will say no more about the plot. This is a very affecting, thought-provoking, emotional, intelligent and brilliantly written book. Filer’s style grabs you and won’t let go. I read this in a single day. It is one of those books where you may find that there is something in your eye in parts so bring a hankie to your favourite reading chair, snuggle up and dive right in.

Overall – This very much deserves all the praise and hype, go and get a copy, now!

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