Review: The Victoria Lie
When is a lie a lifeline? To Tori lies are everything.
ZOE wants to end her life. But she can’t just leave a note. She needs to say goodbye to boyfriend JAMES and best friend ALISON.
TORI is waiting in the wings to fill the space ZOE will leave behind, wanting to claim both James and Alison for herself.
But with ZOE still alive and Alison's childhood friend RUBY now on the scene vying to fill the gap, TORI realises she has her work cut out.
Just what lengths is TORI willing to go to in order to claim Alison and James for herself?
(Trigger warnings: Suicide, depression, IRA bombings, ADHD, Autism, manipulative characters.)
The fascinating piece about Ms. Graye's works is how mundanely she portrays mental illness. We've all grown so accustomed to the over-dramatized portrayals in Gone Girl and Girl, Interrupted, that we forget that most people will mental illness are our neighbors and friends - the nameless strangers next to us on the Tube who sit and read newspapers exactly like the mentally well.
In this book, Ms. Graye continues her focus on suicide, but adds in the idea of psychological manipulation by someone who might be classified as a sociopath. That many of the characters never break free of this manipulation added an element of reality but also broke my heart (even as I realize that I am very definitely the Alison of my own circle).
I don't really know what to make of this book. I think it's brilliant and terrifying and horrible and lovely all at once. The writing is glorious, even as it's experimental and challenging. Quite simply, this is a book you read when you love literature and empathy and you dare to look at what you've never wanted to see. I don't know that I'll read it a second time...but I'll definitely recommend it. So make of that what you will, dear reader.
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British writer Sarah Marie Graye is the author of The Butterfly Effect series, which looks at suicides and those left behind. The Second Cup, the first book in the series, was published in July 2017, and this Blog Tour is to celebrate the launch of the second book in the series, The Victoria Lie.
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