The Other Side of Night by Adam Hamdy
Thriller, Psychological Thriller, 15+
Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review The Other Side of Night.
The Other Side of Night was an experience I wasn’t prepared for. It introduced some great elements from thrillers and science fiction and combined them in a seamless way. I wanted to end of the novel to drag a bit slower for pacing and immersion, but there was nothing wrong with the elements and how they were used.
Harriet Kealty is a police officer trying to clear her name after an incident goes wrong and leads her to suspension. After finding a terrifying inscription in a book in a secondhand store, she is led to David Asha, who was last seen stepping off a cliff. His son, Elliot, is now in the care of a man Harriet knows all too well: Ben Elmys. Once the love of her life, Ben is now suspected of murder. Is anything at all how it seems?
I enjoyed the mysteries of this novel from the beginning. Harriet is a great protagonist to follow as she knows very little about what is going on, has drive to find out everything, and has conflicted feelings about both Ben and Elliot. Seeing them through her eyes, I was able to be a part of the emotional puzzle as Harriet attempted to come to terms with the fact that the love of her life might be a murderer, while also trying desperately to find any piece of information that would clear his name or cast doubt on his guilt.
The possible downfall of this novel, and the reason why I couldn’t give it five stars, was the jolting time-jump in the middle of the novel. I believe almost ten years are skipped, making the child Elliot into an adult and placing Harriet into a new job at a more experienced age. I felt like a lot of the development these characters were undergoing was lost at that point. It felt like they’d already gone through their lives and we were tuning in again to watch them finally figure it out and get all the answers. I do understand that there were reasons for this: from a writing perspective, this was the best way for the plot to make sense. But I almost would have prefered the plot to be changed slightly to accomodate this better.
Overall, I ended up giving this novel four out of five stars. It was an entertaining read with an unpredictable ending and I came out of it with a few writing tidbits that I hadn’t thought of before. I’m interested in checking out Adam Hamdy’s novels in the future and I hope that you check out The Other Side of Night. It’s solid characters and surprising twists make for a pleasant, interesting reading experience.
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