Not a huge fan of this book. I honestly didnt get it. Cud anyone plz explain to me what it was all about? It's not like I was expecting some down right action, I'm all for books that are a bit on the philosophical side. But this I found to be utterly monotonous and well, storyless. I kept waiting for the twist that just never came.
I didn't really get it either. That's why I came here, to try and see if anybody was discussing it, to shed some light...especially on the ending. What I inferred from the ending, was that John maybe had a split personality, but I hadn't thought that right up until that bit with the two toy conductors.
Overall, I did find it quite 'storyless', like you said. I kept waiting for a big revelation or something.
I also got the feeling that it hinted throughout that he was abused, yet it never actually hinted properly, and nothing ever really came of the 'hints'.
So, obviously from all my rambling above, I found it to be quite an annoying book.
Completely agree with georgie - it was a page-turner but only because I wanted to find the answers to all these hints that kept appearing. In the end, like you say, you never find out what these hints referred to. I found I was slogging my way through a truly depressing and frustrating book only to find out nothing by the end. And it was a flat ending. It felt almost as though Hyland had got to the end of the story and forgotten what she was trying to say in the first place.
Having said this, however, clearly the book was entertaining enough to hook me in and make me WANT to know what happened next, and the fact that I felt such anger on behalf of John is testament to Hyland's skill as a writer. I read her debut novel (How The Light Gets In) and really enjoyed it. It had similar themes to this one and had the same frustrated feel to it but with a much more accessible protagonist and more engaging story line. I suppose what it comes down to is that I can only take this much depression and misery in a story if there is a point to it, and this book never allowed me to find out what the point of John's suffering was.