My book of the month pick for February is All Fall Down by Tom Bale.
Another author I'm not familiar with, I chose this book because the summary sounded intriguing. It was an excellent read and one I can totally recommend.
Its definitely a thriller, but one that is unpredictable. You think you can see what's coming and then it goes down a completely different path. The brutality it implies is literally terrifying. What actually happens is frightening, but you are reading it thinking "oh my god" in trepidation of what could happen next.
The suspense is electric. This begins with a sunny afternoon family barbeque. A man, who has clearly been tortured, for some reason heads to the home of Rob and Wendy, and dies before anyone can work out who he is or what happened to him, or why.
All manner of possibilities are explored, and its clear that both Rob and Wendy have their own theories. Their adopted daughter Georgia, previously a victim of abuse could be the key. Rob's own murky dodgy dealings look likely. One of their twin sons has clearly been on the wrong side of the law as well, unbeknown to his brother and parents. Could that be it?
The family come face to face with the bad guys. But the real evil hasn't shown its face yet. Bad guys turn out to be the not so bad guys, and turn on the other bad guys and you end up not knowing who is the real villain - they all have a role to play in this.
This book has everything - twists, and turns, marital problems, normal family issues, law breaking, dodgy dealings, torture, murder - its not an easy read. The characters are well developed, if not always likeable. A very clever plot, and intriguing backgrounds make for a riveting read.
Highly recommended - I would give this one an 8 out of 10. My only wish is that it was a little longer, and that the ending could have been made more of, as after all the effort, it seemed a little bit anti-climax. Good book though and well worth a read.