When the author of Anemogram, Rebecca Gransden contacted me a few days ago asking if I would like to review her debut novel I happily agreed and told her I should have read and reviewed it in a couple of days. In reality it took me only three hours.
This was due to the fact that this was a mind blowingly addictive book which I could not put down.
The language and writing style is so rich that the only other author I could possibly compare it to is Peter S Beagle. That in itself is the biggest compliment I could possibly give. The type of writing which is sometimes discouraged in this day and age and the type of writing I happen to love. Like someone describing what they see on a cinema screen. It’s incredible. It’s delicious and in the case of this book it’s highly disturbing.
The underlying currents of horror, sex and perversion reminded me a little of Lolita but without the sexual element at all. I’m not even sure that sentence makes sense but it’s how this little novel made me feel.
The sense that this child was somehow ‘otherworldy’ was a pervading undertone throughout. The unsuriety of what would happen next. The confusion, the whole damn book is a riddle!
It was incredible. I can’t help but go back to the language and the writing because it made the book. The obsessive and sometimes disgusting things which went on (I refer you to the picking of the scab). Mixed in with the constant question in the readers mind of WHO IS SHE?
It’s dark, it’s creepy, it’s the stuff of nightmares while not exactly being scary. It’s weird and wonderful and utterly frustrating and it’s the best book I’ve read all year.