Friday, 29 July 2016

Brother by Ania Ahlborn

Deep in the heart of Appalachia stands a crooked farmhouse miles from any road. The Morrows keep to themselves, and it's served them well so far. When girls go missing off the side of the highway, the cop don't knock on their door. Which is a good thing, seeing as to what's buried in the Morrows' backyard.

But nineteen-year-old Michael Morrow isn't like the rest of his family. He doesn't take pleasure in the screams that echo through trees. Michael pines for normalcy, and he's sure that someday he'll see the world beyond West Virginia. When he meets Alice, a pretty girl working at a record shop in the small nearby town of Dahlia, he's immediately smitten. For a moment, he nearly forgets about the monster he's become. But his brother, Rebel, is all too eager to remind Michael of his place...

Brother is not a book for the faint hearted - in fact, I think this is probably the most twisted and disturbing book I have ever read! I don't really know how to talk about the book without going in to spoiler review depth, so that's why I'm writing a mini review on the book instead.

The Morrow's are a very sick family, not in the physical sense but in the mental sense, and within that family is Michael, a na├»ve young man who does as he is told, typically by his older brother Rebel, which leads to some tragic circumstances.  There are more members of the Morrow family but I'm only touching upon Michael and Rebel as they are the most developed characters within the story and the primary focus of the plot.

A lot goes in to the plot that is taking place at the heart of the story, with a deep history reflected upon and some dark secrets long kept. From the way in which the story is told, you know you are waiting for something tragic to happen, and you're keeping your eyes peeled, and yet you still don't quite seeing it coming just as it does, and I absolutely love that element of the plot. The way in which the story is pieced together is really well done and allows the book to be quite a page turner - I finished the book in two days, very unlike me!

There is no doubt that Brother is a dark and disturbing read, but it is also the kind of book you just can't put down. I think the author's writing and pacing makes for the need to read, but also the empathy you feel for Michael as a character, knowing in some way that this isn't going to end well... Because even though Michael has done some terrible and bone chilling things, you can't help but feel for him as an outsider in the Morrow family home. He didn't ask for this life, and that makes it all the more cruel, and heart breaking even.

If you are someone who can stomach these horror type books, I'd highly recommend checking out Brother... But as I said at the beginning, it isn't for the faint hearted!



  1. I am so glad you read it Jade, they are one messed up family right. Shocking. I agree you can't help but to feel for Michael even though he has been taught to do the impossible also. Great story. I will read more by her for sure. The waiting does keep you peeled to your seat.

    1. As am I, Marce - I was so tempted to avoid this one because of the gruesome elements despite being intrigued by the plot, and so I'm glad your review gave me that kick to pick it up.

      I would definitely be interested in reading more by Ania Ahlborn.

  2. I'm not sure I could stomach this one but it does sound crazy intense! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

    1. 'Crazy intense' is a great description, Katherine! This book wouldn't be everyone's cup of tea, and I can totally see why you wouldn't read it. Thanks for reading my review :-)


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