Wednesday, August 31, 2005

The Fetch of Mardy Watt - Charles Butler

I started reading Charles Butler's The Fetch of Mardy Watt during my half hour lunch break at work today - and finished it about an hour ago whilst a thunderstorm raged over my head (which somehow seemed appropriate !) It's a relatively short book, a little over 200 pages, but it's also rather hard to put down. I resented the fact that I had to put it aside at the end of my lunch break to continue working and I read it over dinner, putting off doing the washing up until the book was finished. In fact, I was surprised at how much I didn't want to put it down, given that I'm not very fond of supernatural books. I read Macbeth at the age of 13 and I'm not ashamed to admit that it frightened the socks off me - since then I've mostly avoided books like this one, although I was obliged to study Henry James' The Turn of the Screw during my English degree. Anyway I picked this up wondering just how spooky it would be, and was surprised it was less spooky than I had anticipated.

Synopsis: Whatever spell had been put on her was growing stronger. And suddenly, rather than fear, she felt a rush of burning anger. How dare anyone do this to her! How dare anyone steal her life!

Something is haunting Mardy Watt. It's been in her room, it's fooling her friends and it's upsetting her home life. And the trouble is, nobody realises what is happening except Mardy herself.

Exactly why the Fetch is picking on her, Mardy doesn't know – but she does know that she has to find out, before it takes over and replaces her completely.

This is something of a supernatural thriller - there is a mystery relating to why the Fetch is trying to take over Mardy's life, and just who or what is Rachel Fludd. It's also a race against time - can Mardy's best friend Hal help her to reclaim her life before she is trapped forever in her horrible half-life ? And just who is the mysterious Mayor ? I'm not going to answer these questions, because then there would be no point in you reading the book, and I strongly recommend that you do read it. Charlie Butler's books may not be exactly to my taste, but I think they deserve to be far better known than they are at present. If you don't believe me, you can download an extract in PDF from Charlie's publisher's website and read it for yourself.

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