Book Review: Fall For Anything by Courtney Summers

When Eddie Reeves’s father commits suicide her life is consumed by the nagging question of why? Why when he was a legendary photographer and a brilliant teacher? Why when he seemed to find inspiration in everything he saw? And, most important, why when he had a daughter who loved him more than anyone else in the world? When she meets Culler Evans, a former student of her father’s and a photographer himself, an instant and dangerous attraction begins. Culler seems to know more about her father than she does and could possibly hold the key to the mystery surrounding his death. But Eddie’s vulnerability has weakened her and Culler Evans is getting too close. Her need for the truth keeps her hanging on...but are some questions better left unanswered? (From Goodreads.com)

Until this book I’d never read anything by Courtney Summers, although I did have her previous books on my wishlist. After reading raving reviews on this one I decided to give it a go. While I didn’t exactly love this book, I do now appreciate why she has many fans and will definitely pick more of her work up in the future.

Fall For Anything tells the story of Eddie Reeves, whose father has recently committed suicide completely out of the blue. There was no indication he was depressed or that he would take his own life, and the letter he leaves offers little explanation either. `With her Mum in a state of complete nervous breakdown, Eddie’s left to grieve alone, until a student of her fathers turns up, possibly with the answer of Why? Eddie so desperately seeks.

Courtney Summers writing is aching painful and honest, there’s little doubt about that. I was sucked in completely and couldn’t put the book down. Her portrayal of Eddie’s grief is raw and intense and she drew her feelings so vividly I felt them myself. I love how she describes things in simple, stark language yet still managed to me make me visualise them perfectly. With a first person narrative from Eddie herself and short powerful chapters I found the book all absorbing and difficult to put down. The mystery of her dad’s photographs kept me gripped too and I had to know how the story ended.

But despite all that there was something stopping me completely loving this book. I found it uncomfortable at times, in a way that surprised me. I don’t find it difficult to read books with traumatic themes and I don’t think this is what stopped me being blown away. I think possibly the book was too bleak and without hope. I wanted something nice to happen to Eddie, but it didn’t. In particular I hated her Mother’s friend Beth and found it difficult to believe anyone could be so cruel to a young girl grieving her father. I left the book feeling heavy hearted for hours after, which of course is a sign of how well the author writes but for me was just a little much.

Overall, while not a favourite I did appreciate Summer’s writing and found it engrossing. I really liked the photographic references too and like Eddie while I lack creativity myself, people who are artistic always fascinate me. Perhaps I read this book when I needed something more upbeat, and would warn others that it is far from a light read and be prepared. One things for certain, Summers writing will evoke emotion in you and will stay with you long after the last page.


Published in US by St Martins Griffen, December 2010 

2 comments:

  1. I understand where your coming from, it was depressing, but I was able to enjoy it nevertheless. I thought the book was petty amazing :)

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  2. I'm sorry to hear that the tone and plot were too heavy for you :( Courtney Summers has quickly become one of my favourite authors after really liking Cracked Up to Be and LOVING Some Girls Are. I'm absolutely DYING to read this one, so I'm really jealous that you've already done so.

    I think the cover is gorgeous and I'm really intrigued about the photos. And possibly already upset by horrid Beth! Gah, how much do I want to read this one!!

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