“It was all because of a small slip in time, the whole story. The repercussions were felt for years and years.”
Byron Hemmings is an eleven year old boy growing up in a posh house on the moors. His friend, James, informed him that two seconds would be added to time this year, and it terrified him. We and Byron anticipate the accident that soon occurs, the accident that will change Byron’s life and take us readers through the downward spiral of Rachel Joyce’s narrative.
It’s a different sort of book. There’s a dual narrative, actually. The first is Byron’s and the accident, which occurred in 1972. The second is the modern day story of Jim, a mentally ill, middle-aged man who lives in a camper and works at a sandwich/coffee shop. The writing is amazing. Joyce has a way of keeping you interested, while at the same time piquing your curiosity with references to time and perfection.
The stories converge at the end, and while there was no great “aha” moment for me, it was alright. I can imagine there will be many a book club that will ponder the themes of the book and discuss the issues of depression and mental illness, the problems of upward mobility and the troubles that arise when we make assumptions about one another.
Thanks to Random House and TLC Book tours for providing a review copy of Perfect.
4 stars (out of 5)
Published in 2013