Sometimes I read books so obsessively that I end up with something like this when I’m finished:
Then I sit around for a week (or two, or twelve) because I have no idea how to write the review.
It only seems fitting that someone like me (who clearly has an undiagnosed mental disorder) would flag the holy hell out of a book about a fellow with a mental disorder. It also seems fitting that I should let Matthew do most of the talking when it comes to telling you what this book is about.
Matthew has been raised by a mother who "is thin and pale, with cold hands. She has a broad chin that she is very self-conscious about. She sniffs the milk before she drinks it. She loves me. And she is mad," And a father who "is tall and broad, and stoops a little. He wears a leather jacket because he used to ride a motorbike. He calls me mon ami. And he loves me." He lived with a brother named "Simon. I think you’re going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that."
Matthew was never quite the same after that, either. He’ll tell you that "you notice it when he isn’t there anymore. You notice so many of the places where he isn’t, and you hear so many of the things he doesn’t say. I do. I hear them all the time."
Matthew will have to confront those demons of the past in order to come to terms with the reality of the present. Generally I find cover blurbs to be wholly inaccurate, but "rare and brilliant" is a very fitting description for Where the Moon Isn’t. Filer really knows how to get you into a character’s soul.