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A Long Way Down

Book cover

Reviewing a second Jeffrey Deaver novel yesterday reminded me that I hadn’t followed up my initial comments on Nick Hornby’s A Long Way Down.

Four different people, each at rock bottom and ready to commit suicide but saved by meeting each other on top of the building they planned to jump from; rather than letting them take the quick way down, Hornby follows them as they help each other in the slow climb back up.

I finished it a week or so ago and thought it was excellent. In particular it demonstrates that, as well as having the inspiration that is necessary to decide what to write about, Hornby also understands the craft of writing. Throughout the book, the narrative is divided between the four protagonists; before long, you don’t need the headings to know which one of the four is talking because each voice offers a distinctive perspective.

I’m now a confirmed fan of his writing (although I wasn’t so bowled away with 31 Songs, which I read a year or two ago) and look forward to exploring more of his novels in the coming months.

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