Catching up on the books I read during my long hiatus, I come back to Grist Mill Road, by Christopher J. Yates.
I've been on a long run of thrillers lately--I don't know why, maybe because they're kind of fluffy? You get a lot of tension without using up a lot of brainpower. The fantasy and sci fi that I enjoy in generally pretty intense in world building and when they're dark, it just seems more significant, somehow.
So: thrillers, suspense, murder. I got Grist Mill Road from Netgalley for review, because a blogger with dark tastes liked it a lot. She and I don't always agree, but this one was good. It takes advantage of multiple points of view to tell a twisty story that keeps you guessing without a lot of surprise revelations--just a slow unfolding of perspective.
At the beginning of the book, our narrator is Patrick, looking back on his childhood and telling the story of his friendship with a boy named Matthew--a little older, a lot rougher, getting up to some dangerous games. A girl named Hannah comes into their lives, and eventually a Big Awful happens.
Later in the book, we get more perspectives--we get information from Hannah and even from Matthew, and we learn about their lives now, years along, as well as more aspects to what happened back then. We learn where the cracks are in their lives, and we learn more and more about that horrible day.
My favorite part about this book is the ambiguity that it leaves you with. It starts with a clear story, the kind of story you usually get in a narrative. And then it muddies the water more and more without changing the facts, until you can't see who could have done what to change things.
Less fluffy (really, is that the word I want?) than what I'm usually going for in my suspense, but worth it, because the twists really illuminate a lot about how the world is. What more does anyone want in their books?
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