Good Evening you B-E-A-Utiful Bookworms. ^_^
I am so glad that Friday is finally here! There’s just this unique little spark that follows me on Fridays, making me a better version of myself- more productive, more upbeat, etc.
At the moment, I’m sat here, boiling in my shorts and t-shirt as Summer sets into Eastern England.
Do Fridays make you feel a particular way?
Today, I’m reviewing Drift- Stumble- Fall, a contemporary novel that explores how individuals can become discontented with their everyday lives, and feel unappreciated in general.
The first chapter entitled ‘The beginning of the end of it all’ pretty much sums up the novel: we see devoted father and husband, Richard desperately seeking a way out of his current mundane routine. Richard hates what his home life has become and longs to disappear, just as his world has, under a crisp blanket of snow.
From the first page, Richard shows excessive stress, with his nerves being further grated on as his family continue to bombard him with an endless list of tasks and chores, leaving Richard absolutely no time to himself, other than the brief moments he’s able to steal away.
The story begins with a dark and somewhat mysterious tone, paving the way ahead with lots of foreshadowing. We see Richard’s perspective shift on occasion: at first, the picture we are painted of his wife, Lisa is one of absolute control and apparent laziness. However, later in the book, we see Richard’s view change when he remembers the parts of his wife that drew him to her in the first place.
I personally don’t feel as though Richard ever wanted to leave. I think Richard’s feelings of being unappreciated, along with the general exhaustion he feels with his everyday life, have brought him to this particular state of mind.
The story centres around Richard’s feelings of helplessness as he struggles internally- should he stay, or should he go? I think a lot of middle-aged men probably have felt this way at some point , especially if they feel ganged up on by others, or if they’ve had to ‘give up’ on their dreams, for whatever reason.
The final half of the novel explores the lives of Richard’s neighbours, Bill and Rosie, and the tragedies they’ve faced over the years. Their story made me feel terrible: I couldn’t imagine being in their situation. By the end of the novel, I was glad for the elderly couple, and was also relieved that their experience taught Richard something crucial- that you should never wish to exchange your life with another’s.
‘All the years I have wasted standing at my window, yearning to be looking out of someone-else’s window. The not knowing what I am even wishing for. Finding out that the people I want to change places with have not lived at any time since their own time stopped years before- I eagerly agreed to swap my house, my family, my life without having the first idea what I would get in return.’
This realisation really hits home, as seen through Richard’s eyes. I found myself tearing up just reading it, his feelings so powerful that at times, they overwhelmed me.
I would definitely recommend Drift- Stumble- Fall.
I would rate it 5/5 stars!