Gavin F (gavluvsga) wrote in 50bookchallenge,
Gavin F

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Book #16: The Bellwether Revivals by Benjamin Wood

Number of pages: 428

This story opens with a character named Eden Bellwether apparently dying, but quickly goes into an extended flashback that explains the events that lead up to this moment.

The book's protagonist, Oscar, an ordinary lad from Watford, arrives at Cambridge University and meets Eden and his sister Iris, who are both very wealthy. They make friends very quickly, and Oscar falls in love with Iris. However, Eden starts claiming he can control the minds of others using musical instruments, although this aspect seems to be quickly forgotten about, with the story revolving around Oscar and Iris getting a psychologist to attempt to prove whether Eden has a narcissistic personality disorder and Oscar claiming that he has healing powers, and attempting to use them on the psychiatrist's brain tumour.

The characters in the book were written very well, with Eden almost straight away coming across as an obvious antagonist. However the story, while by no means awful, didn't exactly seem brilliant; I was expecting a horror story, but this turned out to be a somewhat average psychological thriller with gothic undertones, and the flash-forward at the start meant that it was mostly easy to tell where the story was going.

Overall, the story was easy to follow, despite the pace often feeling very slow, and padded out with the profound (but long-winded) discussions regarding psychological disorders, but I probably would not recommend it to others.

Next book: Lords and Ladies (Terry Pratchett)
Tags: book review, british, contemporary, fiction, gothic novels, mental health, psychiatry, thriller

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