Hello everyone, and welcome back to The Bookworm’s Fantasy! I hope you’re all well. Today I’m going to be posting the newest instalment to my “Top Shelf Spotlight” series – ‘The Shock Of The Fall’ by Nathan Filer. You can find the other posts in the series here. In this series, I will be focusing on one book in particular that has made my “top shelf/favourites” bookshelf. I’ll be giving you some information on the book, as well as sharing some of my personal thoughts on the novel. I hope you enjoy this new series, and please leave any feedback below, including any other posts or series you’d like to see on my blog! So, here goes…
The Shock Of The Fall by Nathan Filer.
‘I’ll tell you what happened because it will be a good way to introduce my brother. His name’s Simon. I think you’re going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that.’
I would go so far as to say that ‘The Shock Of The Fall’ is my favourite book, ever – and that’s really saying something. I read it a couple of years ago and it’s stayed with me ever since … I can’t wait to re-read it again!
About the Author
Nathan Filer is the author of novel ‘The Shock Of The Fall’ and various other essays, feature articles and reviews. He begin his career as a poet, and his poetry short film ‘Oedipus’ won many awards. He originally trained and worked as a mental health nurse, then later as a mental health researcher. He lives in Bristol and lectures in creative writing at Bath Spa University.
About the Book
Release Date: January 2014
Genre: General Fiction
Average Goodreads rating: 3.78
Author’s other works: None.
Themes explored: Death, grief, mental illness.
Favourite character/narrator: Matthew!
What I liked/overall standout elements:
- The characterisation of Matthew is absolutely fantastic. He’s kind and honest, and he really does deserve the world. But unfortunately, he is consumed by grief after his brother’s tragic death, and his life spirals downhill when he develops the mental illness schizophrenia.
- Following on from the last point, this novel explores the theme of mental illness (schizophrenia) expertly. Not many authors are able to write about such a complex, serious illness, and Filer explores this illness sensitively and with a great deal of accuracy.
- I really enjoy the exploration of the theme of grief within the novel. When Simon is tragically killed when they are children, Matt’s life is forever changed and he suffers greatly. His intense love for his brother is really touching and heart-warming.
- I really love the narrative methods employed within this book. The story begins in Matt’s childhood and then follows him into adolescence and young adulthood. Then at the end of the novel, it jumps back to the past, and the truth behind Simon’s death is revealed.
- Although it is not explicitly a thriller novel, the book still has a great deal of suspense and mystery surrounding Simon’s death. This book is a real page-turner, and I promise you won’t be able to put it down until you find out the truth.
- There’s a fantastic end resolution which ties everything together in the most astounding way. There’s a big reveal which I really didn’t expect, and suddenly everything makes sense and the pieces of the puzzle all fit together. I absolutely love the ending to this book.
Happy reading 🙂