Saturday, May 12, 2018

Book Review: Where the Dead Sit Talking by Brandon Hobson

Where the Dead Sit Talking

by Brandon Hobson

Hardcover, 288 pages

Published February 20th 2018 by Soho Press

This is a dark and subtle book, that really tugs at your heart strings. I thought this was a very well written book that appreciate despite it not really being my thing. I picked it up at the library because I remembered Duncan Barlow talking about it and I respect his opinion. So that reminds me, keep talking about books on social media people it helps authors. More importantly it gets people talking about reading and the joy of reading.

This novel is the story of Sequoyah, a fifteen-year-old Cherokee boy who travels through the circles of hell in the foster care system after his mother is thrown in jail. We are with him when he ends up at new schools, and new homes. A great deal of the novel centers on the relationships that Sequoyah makes and how they effect his life.

Brandon Hobson is a writer I have not read before so I don't know how this novel matches his overall style but the first thing I noticed was the slow-burn and detailed style of the prose. Sequoyah doesn't have a charmed life and this novel feels at times like we are being given a window into moments we shouldn't see. He is a character I had never seen or read before, so I was interested through out to see how he navigated this world. I wanted to help this character out and sometimes the narrative gives the reader a helpless feeling.

It is a coming of age novel, but not in a typical by the numbers way. It doesn't tick off plot points. Sequoyah doesn't come of age into a better situation but his scars and pain are kind of the point. A powerful debut.

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