My Rating: 5/5 stars
This was one of the Man Booker International nominated books of 2017.
About this book: (Should probably skip this and delve right into the book)
A young woman named Amanda lies dying in a rural hospital clinic. A boy named David sits beside her. She’s not his mother. He’s not her child. Together, they tell a haunting story of broken souls, toxins, and the power and desperation of family.
Fever Dream is a nightmare come to life, a ghost story for the real world, a love story and a cautionary tale. One of the freshest new voices to come out of the Spanish language and translated into English for the first time, Samanta Schweblin creates an aura of strange psychological menace and otherworldly reality in this absorbing, unsettling, taut novel.
As I read this book, I was hooked in by the narrative from the first page. There is something quite interesting about seeing things from a person’s point of view but not by the stuff they think but by the stuff they say. Throughout the novel, it is hard to place one theme in it. It started as a mystery thriller and gave me a horror-ish feeling at times, but as I got lost in the characters and when the story started unfolding and finally making sense, I understood what it was all about. With pesticides as a theme, it showed two major things- the paranoia of a mother and the chilling unsafe atmosphere.
When the book ended, I had so many thoughts running around in my head which I have lost in the way of writing this review. but if I am to add my point of view to it, I wonder if the whole novel is the seven-second flashback of the protagonist’s life (mainly the important events) as she battles death. We hear an inside voice of her head, telling her which details are important and which are not, and those focus mainly on unimportant flashes or images which makes me believe in my theory a little more. There are very little actual spoken aloud conversations in the book and mainly just thoughts and details about images that one sees in flashes and feverish delirium. This is her, retracing her steps back to all the things that led to the event of her death (this also explains the rescue distance thing, keeping a track and measure about everything), and as such, this was the most interesting narrative I have read.
Even the quote “If you focus, things happen faster. Then they’ll also end faster.”
kind of supports the argument because if she focuses, she’ll realise that she isn’t alive anymore and that would be the end.
Now, most people wouldn’t agree with this theory because it is a far stretch, but a book is how it is interpreted and my way of interpretation makes it interesting to me.