Happy Thursday lovelies! Today I’m bringing you a review and giveaway on the blog tour of The Nine Lives of Jacob Fallada – a sad, dark and harrowing comedy drama….
The whole world against him
The Nine Lives of Jacob Fallada is the story of an outsider, a lonely, misunderstood young artist who chronicles all the unpleasant things that happen to him in life. Abandoned by his parents, brought up be a tyrannical aunt, bullied at school, ostracized by the local community, nearly everyone Jacob comes into contact with takes an instant, (often) violent dislike towards him. Like Job from the bible, he is beaten and abused, manipulated and taken advantage of. Life, people, fate, circumstance force him deeper into his shell, deeper into the cocoon of his fledgling artistic work, where he records every significant event in sketches, paintings and short-form verse, documenting his own unique, eminently miserable human experience. At heart, he longs for companionship, intimacy, love, but is dealt so many blows he is too scared to reach out to anybody. On the fringes of society, he devotes himself solely to his art.
This is a dark, pretty harrowing and bitter sweet comedy drama.
Jacob goes through his life never really being accepted, not having any friends, being accused of things he hasn’t done (just because of the way he looks) and generally just coming in to contact with mean and spiteful people. The chapters tell a different story of Jacob’s life – what happened, how he felt and how he ultimately turns the experience into a piece of art.
He’s very secretive and guarded about his work – preferring to keep it to himself; it’s his outlet for all the terrible things that have happened to him….
I’m not going to say much more than that on the storyline. Randall has done a great job of adding comedy to this, despite the fact that this is ultimately a sad story of one man and his life. I felt sorry for Jacob the whole way through and just wanted things to improve for him. A gentle, and kind man who has been completely misunderstood by the world; his tale is a sad one. But his love for his art, and how he uses it to understand himself and the bigger picture, is wonderful and unique.
This is definitely a different story to those that I usually read, and I still don’t know fully how I feel about it – not in a bad way, but it really made me think about the people who are out there that this could truly reflect. There were certain chapters that I didn’t quite understand, and felt rather confused after finishing but I think it’s because I’ve not read anything like this before! Don’t let that put you off though!
If you enjoy a dark and sorrowful tale, that will give you something to think about but make you smile with the irony – then this is for you. If you want a feel-good tale with a happy ending, then this definitely isn’t for you!
about the author
Neil Randall is the author of seven published novels and a collection of short stories. His work has been published in the UK, US, Australia and Canada
Win 3 Copies of The Nine Lives of Jacob Fallada
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the link below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
tour hosted by
Rachel’s Random Resources
Thanks to Rachel for inviting me on to the tour, and to Neil and the publisher for providing me with a copy of the book in return for an honest review.
Have a wonderful day lovelies – it’s nearly the weekend!