Monday, 26 January 2015

Review: This Is the Life by Alex Shearer

Even when you have received a death sentence, you still have to live…

“Life just seems like a big party sometimes, at which we all gradually get edged to the door, and then we are out in the cold. But the party continues without us…”
This is the story of Louis, who never quite fitted in, and of his younger brother who always tagged along.
Two brothers on one final journey together, wading through the stuff that is thicker than water.
Tender-hearted, at times achingly funny, This is the Life is a moving testimony to both the resilience of the human spirit and to the price of strawberries.

Hardcover, 248 pages

Terri's Thoughts

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher Atria via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  The expected publication date is February 3rd 2015 although Goodreads indicates that it has already been released which suggests it is a re-release.

This is one of those stories that I do not think I will be able to express my thoughts on.  On the one hand it is a moving story about a brother dealing with the illness of his sibling and remembering moments throughout their life.  It is about grief, survival and acceptance.  On the other hand I struggled with the dialogue between almost all of the characters.

I will start with my struggles.  Do you ever read a story and all of the conversations sound funny in your head?  I am not sure how to describe it but all of the conversations sounded a bit robotic and pretty much everyone talked the same.  Perhaps someone out there can identify and elaborate for me because I simply can't describe it.  This made the story a little difficult for me, almost like bad actors in a play.

On the other hand I appreciated how eccentric the characters were particularly Louis.  It made the story worth reading for me.  Also I am not sure if it was intentional or not but I saw a lot of dry sarcasm throughout which I can always appreciate.

Essentially this story had some flaws for me but deep down there was a moving story, albeit random, for me.  I am curious what others think of it.

About the Author

Alex Shearer started his writing career as a scriptwriter and has had great success in that field. His credits include The Two of Us, the 1990s sitcom starring Nicholas Lyndhurst. More recently he has started writing for children. His Wilmot stories have been adapted for TV by Yorkshire television, and his children's novel, The Greatest Store in the World, was screened as a feature length TV film on Christmas Eve 1999 by the BBC. Alex's recent novel 'The Speed of the Dark' was shortlisted for the 2002 Guardian Fiction Prize

Alex Shearer lives with his family in Somerset. He has written more than a dozen books for both adults and children, as well as many successful television series, films, and stage and radio plays. He has had over thirty different jobs, and has never given up trying to play the guitar

1 comment:

  1. Great review. I don't think I have the emotional strength to read this book though... Hehe ;)

    Cucie @ Cucie reads