Posted 20 hours ago

Bad Fruit: The unforgettable, gripping and highly acclaimed new crime thriller debut novel from a hot literary fiction voice of 2023

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The subjects of abuse, generational trauma and their effects are covered very well in my opinion and I felt like I truly learned something from reading this book.

As disturbing as the content of this novel was, Kings writing is an aesthetic masterpiece - a sensory feast! Mình bắt đầu cảm thấy tồi tệ bởi những gì bà May đã ảnh hưởng đến những đứa con của bà ta, phải nói là cực kỳ tồi tệ. It centers on Lily, a young biracial Singaporean British girl living in London who is experiencing alarming flashbacks that she can't place.

Throughout the story Lily suffers from hallucinations but the hallucinations are actually flashbacks to her mothers abusive childhood and they are causing Lily to suffer panic attacks. Bad Fruit lấy góc nhìn từ Lily - cô con gái vừa tròn 18 tuổi, con lai giữa mẹ là người Châu Á và bố là người Anh.

In her debut novel, King brilliantly portrays generational abuse and trauma passed down from parent to child and a resulting, conscious fight to break free from the toxic cycle.Lily escapes to a bolthole she has created in the attic and as if the toxic atmosphere in the home isn’t bad enough she starts to have flashbacks which present a puzzling conundrum, who exactly is the bad fruit?

A sense of fear, foreboding and impending doom begins to provide the storytelling and that builds in intensity and it’s palpable.

The 'Bad Fruit' of the title is not just the referring to the mother's taste for soured juice, but giving us a metaphorical insight into the impact parenting can have on the trajectory of children's lives from generation to generation. Bad Fruit cuts away the skin of a family as if a daughter could be a knife slicing through lies, pain, and fear. Ella King won the Blue Pencil Agency pitch prize in 2019 with the first 500 words of her debut novel 'Bad Fruit', an accolade which I am pleased to say is supported by the absolute quality of the entire novel.

You know something is up, but King withholds details, slowly revealing the narrative in a classic literary thriller way. Sau đó, mình được biết về thói quen kỳ lạ của bà May, rằng bà ta muốn Lily chăm sóc, pha nước trái cây hỏng (trái cây sắp thối), thích chơi cùng gấu bông.

As the story progresses you also start to wonder if Lily’s flashbacks are really of her mother’s early life or are they Lily’s own. This is such a well done character-driven suspense with some dark themes that will keep you guessing until the end. It's a slow-moving story, but the character dynamics are really good, especially the mother-daughter relationship between Lily and Mama. It’s a very dark story, but the characters and their relationships with one another are so perfectly written that I fell head and soul into this book and read it in one sitting. To calculate the overall star rating and percentage breakdown by star, we don’t use a simple average.

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