Penguin |25 January 2018|358 pages|Paperback|3*
This is a very short post about Anything You Do Say, the second of Gillian McAllister’s books. Walking home alone late one night Joanna is sure the man following her is the man who wouldn’t leave her alone in the bar. She turns to face him and panicking she pushes him away. He falls down the steps leading to the towpath alongside a canal and doesn’t move. What should she do? Should she face the consequences – phone the police and ambulance and wait for them to arrive and or just leave him there, lying in a puddle and walk away?
Both decisions have consequences and from that point on the book explores what would happen if she revealed or concealed her actions.
At first I found it a bit confusing keeping the two stories separate in my mind, but that soon passed as the chapters are clearly headed Reveal or Conceal. It’s a dilemma and Joanna is an indecisive character who in both scenarios regrets choosing both reveal and conceal. I really wanted to like this book and although I think it’s well written and the characters, although in the main not very likeable, come across as believable, I found Joanna’s lies and deceit became tedious and the stories dragged on too much for my liking. I think the structure of the book made it seem artificial, more an exercise in morality than a tense thriller or a mystery.
I prefer her other books that I’ve read – Everything But the Truth, No Further Questions and The Evidence Against You. They are all standalone books, so can be read in any order.
This is on of my TBRs and also one of my 20 Books of Summer books.
Every Friday Book Beginnings on Friday is hosted by Gillion at Rose City Reader where you can share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.
The book I’m featuring this week is Anything You Do Say by Gillian McAllister, a book I started reading yesterday and one of the books on my 20 Books of Summer list.
It starts with a selfie. He is a random; we are not even sure of his name. We are always meeting them whenever we go out. Laura says it’s because I look friendly. I think it’s because I am always daydreaming, making up lives for people as I stare at them, and they think I’m inviting them over to chat.
I’m thinking that Joanna (we learn the narrator’s name 2 pages later) should stop staring at people like she does – it’s obviously asking for trouble.
Also every Friday there is The Friday 56, hosted by Freda at Freda’s Voice.
These are the rules:
- Grab a book, any book.
- Turn to page 56, or 56% on your eReader. If you have to improvise, that is okay.
- Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grabs you.
- Post it.
- Add the URL to your post in the link on Freda’s most recent Friday 56 post.
Page 54 and page 56:
I haven’t told him. I haven’t told him. I haven’t told him. I haven’t told him.
How could I tell him? He would stop looking at me that way. That tiny, knowing smile of his. I’m one of the only people he likes. And so how can I tell him, before anyone else?
Well, I said she should stop staring at people – something bad has happened.
What do you think? Would you keep reading?