If I Fall, If I Die by Michael Christie | Rating: ★★☆☆☆
As a note, a printed galley of this novel was sent to me via the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinions in any way.
If I Fall, If I Die showed promise in its summary and by reading just a sample of it we can see that the authors prose is lovely and shows potential. But somehow, it just isn’t enough much of the time. It doesn't flow quite right and it's neither engaging in a solid or shallow sort of way. If I’m being honest I couldn’t believe how slow it was. I had to put it down multiple times and pick it back up to skim through it which was generally disappointing.
It had the unfortunate ability to drag on and on and on. That's my first thought we thinking back to every chapter, it felt like it was never going to go anywhere or even end.
While it didn’t leave the most lasting impression on me, I must admit that there were some portions of the book that I just had to highlight quotes and passages–when it gets into its groove, boy does it go.
Described as a coming of age drama and mystery by Michael Christie, the story follows a boy named Will who has been pretty isolated through the years by his mother who suffers from agoraphobia. Christie manages to portray this illness truthfully and it’s his biggest success within this story.
As for the overall plot, at the start of the novel we see Will as he steps out into a world unfamiliar to him and soon he befriends another boy and finds himself into a mysterious disappearance of another local boy. It shifts between his exploration of life and the mystery.
Will isn’t unlikable or likable to me. I felt very little when it came down to it and thought that a good chunk of his story was forgettable. It was neither entertaining or captivating. He felt very plain to me and it was quite frustrating given his backstory and the entire plot. However, I did enjoy the bits about his mother and really thought a lot of things tied in decently it just wasn’t for me by the end of the novel.
I just felt like so much could have been done different to make reading this novel less of a chore. Michael Christie has a series set of skills, though, and even if the story wasn’t my cup of tea he provided me with a decent amount of quotes that made my rating higher than I had planned.
There’s a possibility that my rating and lack of attachment to the novel is only my issue, though, and readers who are big on mysteries could certainly enjoy themselves in this. What made If I Fall, If I Die forgettable to me could very well be what makes it unique and wonderful to you. I suggest checking it out and if you can’t get into the first quarter of it, it’s not for you.