Saturday, August 20, 2011

This is How

This is just a quick post about my new read This is How by M J Hyland.  After really enjoying Carry Me Down, which I read a few months back, I thought I would try another of her books.  Carry Me Down was narrated by the protagonist and slowly unraveled to reveal his personality and emotional problems.  This is How is written in pretty much the same vein.  Patrick Oxtoby has moved into a boarding house by the sea after his engagement is broken off by his fiance.  We don't know why she broke off the engagement but I expect that this will be revealed later in the plot.  The clever use of the dialogue and Patrick's reactions to certain situations leads you to realise that despite his obvious intelligence he is a very disturbed young man.

The whole time I have felt anxiety as to where the story is going.  I'm now six discs into it (another audio!) and things have taken a turn for the worse.  Patrick has done something very stupid, but he doesn't feel remorse or even sorry for what he has done. He does feel confusion though, he just can't understand the consequence of his recent action.

The other characters in the novel are a bit odd too, the boarding house scenes are very cloying and uncomfortable.  It's well written and I'm really interested in where this is going to end up but, unlike John Egan in Carry Me Down, I don't like Patrick. He's cold and dark with a lot of rage bubbling under the surface.

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