Jane is a complex character, warm, wry, and word-inclined. One of the first things she remembers is a line from a poem; the next is her interest in adjectives and semicolons, lovingly described. Palindromes and poems recur throughout the narrative, a testament to Jane’s—and the author’s—skillful command of language. Court marshals sensory details to bring the reader close to Jane’s experience; the first thing she notices outside the hospital is “smells of wet leaves and pavement mingling with car exhaust and the smoke of cigarettes.” Readers will enjoy getting to know Jane as she gets to know herself again.
Court has penned a narrative that cleverly incorporates science, age, medical anomalies, secret identities, and the maneuvers required to evade surveillance and capture. It’s quieter than the typical thriller, less focused on violent exploits than on the mystery of Jane’s identity, the suspense of her escape, and the texture of her anomalous experience. This well-told existential mystery, with its warm heart and an elegiac sensibility, will draw readers in.
Takeaway: Literary fiction fans will enjoy unraveling the mysteries of Jane’s amnesia, her identity, and her backwards aging.
Great for fans of: Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson, Kazuo Ishiguro’s The Buried Giant.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: B