Thursday 3 December 2015

Turn Of Mind by Alice LaPlante

Turn of MindTurn of Mind by Alice LaPlante
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 1 day

Publisher - Bond Street Books

Pages - 320

Blurb from Goodreads

Is the perfect murder the one you can't forget or the one you can't remember?

Dr. Jennifer White, a brilliant former surgeon in the early grips of Alzheimer's, is suspected of murdering her best friend, Amanda. Amanda's body was found brutally disfigured — with four of her fingers cut off in a precise, surgical manner. As the police pursue their investigation and Jennifer searches her own mind for fractured clues to Amanda's death, a portrait emerges of a complex relationship between two uncompromising, unsentimental women, lifelong friends who were at times each other's most formidable adversaries.

My Review

This book turned out to be very different from what I was expecting to be honest. I was thinking it was going to be a big murder mystery, this isn't exactly the case. Told in first person format and through diary entries, both by Jennifer and members of her family, we see the decline of Jennifer's state of mind and condition. Jennifer has Alzheimer's, her best friend is found murdered, her body has been mutilated with surgical precision. So why would an Alzheimer's sufferer be a suspect? Jennifer was a top surgeon until her condition forced her to stop practicing and she was heard to argue with the victim.

This book has stayed with me even though I have read a few since. You get a glimpse into what it must be like for an individual with this condition. What it must be like for the family, it is very emotive and disturbing to read, particularly for readers who have had someone close to them diagnosed and living with this condition.

The crime takes a back seat for the most part, however before the story does go back to the murder. I loved Still Alice but this was very different. Pick this up with the knowledge that Alzheimer's is the main chunk of this story, from the point of view of Jennifer and how she experiences and interacts with not only the family but the police investigating. It is a brave angle to come at Alzheimer's from and certainly different from any of the books I have read before. 4/5 for me this time, I will be looking for more work by this author.

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  1. Still Alice was a difficult read and it sounds like this one would be too. Good review.

  2. Given that I have an obsession with characters with Alzheimers/how Alzheimers is dealt with in fiction I had high hopes for this. Alas not a fan of the diary entry format as you know, I am put off this book a bit and especially seeing as how I can't quite see how it would work. Still, never say never, it is an interesting premise.

  3. The plot of this book sounds so good. I am glad to hear that the book focused upon the effects of Alzheimers. This seems like a unique way to highlight this terrible condition that all too many people are living with.

    Great review.

  4. It sounds like a unique and compelling book, Lainy. Excellent review!

  5. This one sounds intense and that blurb makes me cringe at the thought the whole fingers cut off.
    If it left you thinking about it even after you were done reading, it was a good read.

  6. This sounds so different, and also intense. I hadn't heard of this one, but your review has certainly caught my attention. I don't especially like to read book about Alzheimer's as it hits too close to home, but it sounds like this one may be worth it. Thanks for your great review.


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