The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold was my favourite novel of the year when it was published several years ago. I was transported into the tale and literally put my life on hold until I finished reading it. It was poignant, uplifting and oh-so sad. Even now I can remember how it gripped me.
So you can imagine how eagerly I waited for this new novel - The Almost Moon. Second novels are often disappointments and, while I wouldn't say that this book falls into that category, it didn't compel me the way The Lovely Bones did.
The human mind is incredibly complex. How people make decisions and how the behaviour of other people affects us is also challenging to unravel. That's what makes us and our stories endlessly fascinating. The Almost Moon offers some insight into a dysfunctional family and the effect that each member's actions have on others. It certainly made me consider how difficult it can be to extricate ourselves from dysfunctional ties. I suppose that's why I read novels - to think about the issues raised - so in that respect the story is worthwhile pondering some more.