Thursday, June 26, 2008

Book Review: Overtaken by Alexei Sayle

Overtaken is a tale of the events that happen to Kelvin immediately before, during and after a road accident that kills his entire group of friends. Fighting with emptiness and depression he decides to create a "memorial" to them in the most unusual fashion - a story that contains a strange twist at the end which although wasn't completely unexpected, was only anticipated in the few pages preceding the end.

With a few moments of humour, this is not the comedy novel one might expect from an author who is a well-known comedian but instead an unusually calculating story of revenge which does not work out quite in the way the reader or the main character expects, and a few things about Kelvin's personality and ways of thinking are fairly thought-provoking.

A number of themes are dealt with in this book, the main one being revenge but also how people grieve differently, how some forms of help are not always appropriate and that it can sometimes be wise to heed warnings about new girlfriends despite how lovely they seem at first.

Overtaken is a very reader-friendly book and one is consumed with an interest to discover exactly how revenge will be obtained, turning this into something of a page-turner.


This is a really engrossing story with some moments to laugh at but a story that is both enthralling and surprising. Recommended for readers who like their characters to develop and to those who like a good story with an unusual twist.

Score: 9/10

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