Unraveling Oliver: Review

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Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent

American Release Date: 22 August 2017 (previously released in the UK in 2014)
My Rating: 2/5

Oliver Ryan has never displayed any violent tendencies and, as far as any of his acquaintances know, Oliver’s brutal assault of his sweet, shy wife is wholly shocking. Through the perspectives of different characters who have known Oliver over the course of his life the reader uncovers, or, shall we say, “unravels”, the person behind the seemingly put-together, if distant, Oliver.

While well-written and certainly engaging (I read through this novel in nearly one sitting–it’s a fast 250 or so pages) this thriller was not for me. Oliver is a psychopathic monster and right out of the gate, from the first few lines of the book, I hated him. No perspective did anything to make him more human or to remotely endear him or justify him in any way. An entire book devoted to the deconstruction of a character who is ferociously unsympathetic is not for me. The bizarre incorporation of race and mental disability further pushed me away from the novel. Stars for good writing but not a book I would recommend.

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