To paraphrase Dorothy: 'There is no place like London.' I hope I can convince you of that here. Also check out my blog at damselwithadulcimer.wordpress.com and my theatre reviews at www.playstosee.com
Published January 30th 2013
Read Sick at Heart and Decide for Yourself if Alex is Sick
Sick at Heart is an epistolary novel related by Alex, who declares that the book's three letters (to his mother, his wife, and his lover) are a 'faithful record' of his past life. It is up to the readers to judge how faithful they believe his story to be.
Sick at Heart
The prose will grip you from the start, but as Alex matures and his life unravels you will find yourself beginning to question his reliability as a narrator. He casts himself as a twentieth century David Copperfield and a hero of his own life. But is the narrator's memory skewed and unreliable, or is his mind so twisted that he is unable to divorce reality from imagination? Does his mother's treatment damage him, or would he have been unstable anyway? Do the women in his life deserve the treatment he doles out to them, or is he a misogynist who would have manipulated them whatever they did?
I defy you to read Sick at Heart without questioning and analysing the words written by Melissa Jones. She plots the story and draws her characters deftly that you are caught up within the web of her words until you turn the last page, put down the novel and ask yourself the questions that it raises.