The story of an 11 year old boy after his father dies. The story uses a unique story telling device where it's told from the boys mind (or imagined diary), but the result is a stream of consciousness, littered with rule-breaking authoring techniques.
I can imagine this method coming off as forced or trite. But Haig's book manages to execute really well.
There's some vivid scenes of loss that touch my own personal childhood, remembering my own mother in the early chapters.
The boy himself believes he's being visited by his deceased father who asks him to enact revenge for his recent death.
The boy, Philip, struggles with his own confused feelings of being a boy, being 11 and starting to see more of the world, and being thrown into a new family structure. It's all too much for him.
Being inside his head you can understand his actions, and it makes me wonder about how we judge someone from the outside who behaves so oddly or "badly".
Ultimately we're left to decide for ourselves whether the boy is really seeing ghosts, though one thing is clear by the end: he'll need counselling to get through the next 15 years.
A good, fast, little read, perfect for holiday reading.
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