It’s been a good few weeks since my last post, and even longer since my last book review. However, I am back with my thoughts on The Life I Left Behind and the mindset of posting a lot more frequently.
[The Plot]:Six years ago, Melody Pieterson was attacked and left for dead. Only a chance encounter with a dog walker saved her life. Melody’s neighbor and close friend David Alden was found guilty of the crime and imprisoned, and the attack and David’s betrayal of her friendship left Melody a different person. She no longer trusts her own judgment, she no longer trusts her friends. In fact, she no longer really has any friends. She’s built a life behind walls and gates and security codes; she’s cloistered herself away from the world almost entirely.
When I initially picked up this book, it wasn’t sure what to make of it, and I almost thought it would be something similar to ‘The Lovely Bones’ by Alice Sebold, however the book took me completely by surprise.
This book is written from three perspectives and it’s this dynamic that gives the book a different depth to other crime/ thriller books I’ve read in the past. I’ve said already that I was expecting the book to be quite similar to The Lovely Bones, but as soon as I started reading this book I completely forgot about my initial reaction to the blurb and was engrossed in the story from the perspectives of Melody, Eve and Victoria.
Eve’s perspective is an important one in the telling of this story. Although she is dead, and we know she knows who has killed her, at no point are we given any false implications of who the killer is. I felt that Eve didn’t give too much away and I was able to make my own assumptions and predictions, and at no point did I actually guess who the killer is. Also, I found that McBeth hit just the right balance of the supernatural element behind Eve’s perspective, she did well by not trying too hard to create a ghost story as such.
Melody’s story is a powerful one throughout this book. She is completely beaten by the world when we first meet her. She’s scared to leave the house alone, she can’t trust anyone and she does everything she can to distract herself from the real world. When news comes of Eve’s death, it sparks something in Melody and slowly but surely it lights a spark inside of her. She comes on leaps and bounds by the end of the book and I think it is her story that keeps you reading and completely unable to put the book down. I made the mistake of reading this book on my lunch break in work, and I found it really hard to concentrate for the rest of the day until I could continue reading at home.
I hadn’t heard of Colette McBeth until reading this book, and I can safely say I will be reading more of her work. I would love to hear recommendations of any similar books in the comments below!!
I rate this book five out of five stars.
Those were just my bookish thoughts, but I would love to hear yours in the comments below.
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