Fragile Bones (英語) ペーパーバック – 2011/10/4
Kindle 端末は必要ありません。無料 Kindle アプリのいずれかをダウンロードすると、スマートフォン、タブレットPCで Kindle 本をお読みいただけます。
Abandoned on the streets as a youth, Nathan endures with quiet stoicism all the horrors that the back alleys bring. On a night much like any other, he is picked up by a mysterious stranger and brought into a whole new world where he could learn to live again. A destiny far greater than he could've ever imagined awaits. But first, Nathan must relive all the atrocities visited upon his frail body, overcome his dark past and come to accept and love himself before he can move on. Fragile Bones is not for the faint of heart. Enter Nathan's bleak world of torment and pain -- travel with him into the blackest parts of human nature and find with him the immutable spark within all of us that can never be quenched.
T. D. Green writes novels, is a coffee addict and an indentured servant to a clutter of Egyptian Maus.
I'm looking forward to reading more from this author.
This is a very yin yang story. It's about depression and self-loathing and the desire to be better, do better, despite it. It's about how difficult it is to rise above the bad and how easy it is to succumb or worsen, or to give into anger and acts of violence rather than suffer further as a victim. The most wonderful thing about this story is how the author wove the plot together in a manner that makes the grim aspects of human nature bearable enough to read about.
At first, the narrative is somewhat disjointed because of incomplete sentences, but this suits the incoherent nature of the main character. Later on, the wording gets smoother, just as the protagonist becomes more aware and thoughtful. There is a lot of internal conflict in the narrative, but it's balanced with the continuation of the plot. Every once in a while, the author throws in a bit of wry humour, which I liked. There is sexual tension exactly where it needs to be, but this isn't a story about sex, not really.
I had a number of surprises while reading. Nathan and the partner in his journey aren't easy on each other, and that's as it should be. Overall, very worth reading. Kudos to the author for nailing the nuances of depression and self-loathing of a person mired in the history of his victimisation. More kudos for making this dark subject matter so readable.
Just in case you're worried, Fragile Bones ends on a good note. This is a story of redemption, after all. :-)
This book is first person POV, incredibly tightly so, since Nathan is very self-centred, and I don't mean that in a mean way, it is his fight to escape the barren, unfeeling background he had come from that makes him so. As Michael, Nathan's companion and 'saviour', says at one point, he has had much, much more time to come to terms with his past than Nathan and it is their darkness that brings the pair closer and closer. The writing style of this book is thus, sometimes not easy. I read it in two sittings, the first of those was slow going and I had to put it down for a breather. However, when I came back to it, something had clicked and I dived right on in and finished 80% of the book in one go, because there was always something more in the story that I wanted to find out, a little more growth in Nathan.
*WARNING, SPOLIERS BEYOND THIS POINT*
At this point I want to mention a couple of beautifully imagined scenes: they are both moments of Nathan/Michael interaction. The first is set round a camp fire and is where Nathan finally begins to understand what is happening to him. It is tender and inspiring, one of those 'keep reading, there's more to come' moments I mentioned above. The second is just a small scene, an electrical storm and a power cut, nothing incredible, but the moment between Nathan and Michael is snarky and warm at the same time. There is a real connection between the characters.
This is an intensely character driven story, if you like complexly plotted, highly directional works, this one is not for you. If I'm being picky, I would have liked a wee bit more structure around what was happening to Nathan, something that linked things like his death, the attack by thugs when he is back in the city and his eventual grasp of himself, more definitely, but that's just me, lovers of pure character would have no such quibbles.
Finally, this book had the brutal frankness of the likes of 'The Lovely Bones', and an awakening in Nathan that reminded me of a book I read in school called, 'I Am David'. It's an emotional rollercoaster with very little relief for the reader, but that is what kept me reading. Get to the end, it's worth it.
Fragile Bones is will certainly not be to everyone's tastes but those who make the effort to make it through to the end will be rewarded with a work that will remain with them long after they turn off their tablet.