Fiction

Bellman and Black by Diane Setterfield

If you haven’t realized already, I’m one of those people that loves to read books by the same author, especially if I had a great experience reading the first one. That should explain why I decided to read this novel. The Thirteenth Tale was a really good read and I loved the author’s way of writing so I thought this would be great to read, as well.

This novel is about William Bellman. When he was a child, he shot down a rook for sport – something he regretted as soon as it happened. However, as he grows up, he forgets that this incident ever happened. Indeed, his adult life seems to be full of good fortune. But as the people that he loves and cares about start to die, his life is upturned and he begins to spot a man all dressed in black near him. When William is at his rope’s end, he strikes a bargain with the man in black and starts a business with him that is definitely a macabre one.

Okay I’m going to be perfectly honest and tell you that I did not like this book at all. It was well-written, which I expected from the author. But the storyline did not appeal to me one bit. When I finished reading the book, I kept wondering what the point of it all was. The main character wasn’t someone I could feel any emotions for. In The Thirteenth Tale, the main character as well as all the other characters could tug on my heartstrings. But in this novel, the characters seemed detached and devoid of any emotional appeal to me. Maybe this book was too deep for me, maybe I was reading it in the wrong frame of mind. If someone else has read it and has a better opinion of it, then I would love to hear it. But for now, my verdict for this book is that it wasn’t worth reading.

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