anemogram. by Rebecca Gransden

26168438A young girl emerges out of the woods. David is in the middle of wrestling with an unsatisfactory existence when she enters his life. He decides to look out for the girl, but he soon discovers she may not be all she seems.

Together they decide to seek out a place of safety, away from a world that could misunderstand their relationship. As their troubles come to the surface, events take a turn that will have life-changing consequences for the both of them.

Surreal realism and moments described in a way that made me feel as if I was able to touch an excerpt, a moment in time, something from my past! Can you imagine reading a sentence and it makes you feel like you’re taken back 10+ years to an event which you can pull back into current day and rub it in between your fingers, and look at it with a set of different eyes?

The children were over. Slack whispers curled around awkward noises. A park bench gleamed doom hibiscus dosages. One sat prostrate and happy, the other forlorn and weeping.

The writing in this book is unique and original. It will appeal to those who love heavy and authentic prose. Even though the story was like an episode of fever induced hallucinations, where many questions will never be answered, I truly did love how the descriptions felt so very real. The way I have felt them, the way we all feel them. It was the small detail of life that impact all our senses which we tend to overlook in every day lives that Rebecca managed to put on paper. I keep trying to define how reading anemogram. felt but I can’t seem to come up with a coherent way to describe. Take a strange dream of blocks and circles and smells and sounds and make them all 3D material with yourself in the centre, seeing and making sense of everything.

Yes, the whole book is not through and through trippy. There’s a storyline which David and Sarah follow, but the in between moments just stood out the most for me.

The centre of the story is a little girl. Her name is Rachel. Then her name is Sarah. She is appears alone in this world and she is wearing a white dress. The setting is England- forest, city, abandoned sites.

Like for many other readers, the little girl remains a mystery to me. Who is she? What’s her story? At times I expected to read how she returns home and the whole chain of events was like an adventure, a mischievous child returning from exploring. This is not how the story goes however… She was real, yet felt angelic. She was young, yet came across wise beyond her years. Was she innocent? Was she evil? So many questions…

David, a middle aged man… his wife and kids are gone from him, to another country. He has a job, but he is lonely. His existence a mere routine. He will never know how his life changes when he decides to take the little girl under his protection.

He never washed his hands. Today he would. He would not sit in front of Sarah with dick on his hands, eating a burger and fries. She’s had enough dirt in her life and so had he.

And then… There’s Tinker… Tinker is Sarah’s imaginary friend, advisor and bedtime story teller. Tinker’s bedtime stories to Sarah are really rather… imaginative and without a doubt unconventional. I enjoyed Tinker’s existence. Tinker put me on the fence… was he helping Sarah, or is he really the impending doom?

She drank some more. He’s slippery, Tinker said. He knows that you’re after him. She tapped the mug with her nail, making a dull porcelain ring. One, two, three. The hunger rose throughout her body. If she had been alone she would have allowed a tear to release the frustration. She recognized Mungo, saw his makeup. She couldn’t be anything he wanted, he would not be moulded, he would have to go.

My rating: 3***- I liked it. Rebecca’s debut novel does not disappoint. I would suggest this to anyone who likes a story where conclusions aren’t delivered on black-on-white. A story where the line in between real and not so real appears fuzzy. Unexpected behaviour of characters was one thing that turned this book into a surprise for me.

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12 comments

  1. Oh wow!! This seems bloody interesting! And such a great review in which you describe this surreal stuff to the max πŸ˜€ Unexpected behaviours from characters is always a plus as well. It’s what I loved about Frank Friendship πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Small details have so much impact on our lives and yet we often fail to notice them. I love the sound of the book in your own words. I would not have picked it on the blurb itself but you got me curious!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This sounds fabulous, but I don’t do well with unresolved endings. I am the same with movies. I love trippy books, but when there is an open ended finale and no sequel sometimes I think the story is trippy just to be trippy. Does that make any sense? Ha!

    Liked by 1 person

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