Author: Dirk Kurbjuweit
Format: Digital ARC, 303 pages
Publication Details: Jan 25th 2018 by Orion Publishing Group
Disclosure? Yep! I received a free advance copy in exchange for an HONEST review.
‘YOU’D DIE FOR YOUR FAMILY. BUT WOULD YOU KILL FOR THEM?
Family is everything.
So what if yours was being terrorised by a neighbour – a man who doesn’t listen to reason, whose actions become more erratic and sinister with each passing day? And those you thought would help – the police, your lawyer – can’t help you.
You become afraid to leave your family at home alone. But there’s nothing more you can do to protect them.
Fear is psychological thriller with a difference.
At the beginning of the novel we learn that the protagonist’s elderly dad is in prison for shooting a neighbour who was terrorising his family. What follows is the build-up to how and why he took those measures.
Translated from German, the writing style of this book has a distinct Germanic feel to it which I enjoyed. It’s written from the protagonist Randolph’s sole perspective with a stream of consciousness narration. I’ve enjoyed this style in the past, but I did find Randolph a slightly strange, monosyllabic narrator which made it hard for me to truly get on his side. I don’t know if this was the intention to create further intrigue (didn’t work for me) or if it was something lost in translation.
It did create suspense though, and I felt for Randolph every time the police and lawyers failed to help him. His complaint was that his neighbour was sending abusive notes to him and his wife, claiming that he knew they were sexually abusing their two children. This is obviously a terrible thing to be accused of if innocent, as we believe them to be.
However, I didn’t understand some of Randolph’s reaction. He basically went into a meltdown and started wondering if it was true. Had he ever touched them inappropriately when bathing them etc. Has his wife? Now, I don’t have children but I’m pretty sure if I did I would know if I’d touched them inappropriately. I mean, WTF.
Also the fact that him and his wife were slightly estranged and didn’t trust each other either made me question them more, added to the weirdness of his childhood stories about his gun-mad dad and always thinking he might shoot someone – I found it hard to relate to any of them. That being said, this all created a lot of intrigue, and along with some very dark, compelling moments, kept me reading.
it wasn’t a quick read, however. I found it a little slow with all the backstory and a bit too long. However, if you enjoyed We Need to Talk About Kevin, and/or want something a little different than your average psychological thriller then definitely give Fear a go! Bit of wait until it’s released though, soz!
Fear is out 25th January 2018, but you can pre-order it now!