Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Book Review: Booth by Jason Pellegrini

As Joseph Bateman awaits his execution, he looks back over the events in his life that has led him to death row. However, during the execution, as the electricity runs through his body, he finds himself thrown into a foreign body and into an era over a hundred years before his own. His final challenge is to find redemption for his damned soul.

"Scars, no matter how long you give them, never heal."

When Jason Pellegrini contacted me about sending me signed copies of his books in exchange for an honest review, I was pretty excited about it! My bookstagram buddy, Sadie, had read this book Booth earlier in the year and had said it was a really great story, and pretty brutal at times. So suffice to say, I was looking forward to it.

The premise is really interesting - a guy who is on death row looks back over the events in his life that has led him to his current position. However, there is a chance for redemption - through going back in time and preventing one of history's most infamous murders. As soon as I read the synopsis I was seeing similarities between this story and 11/22/63 by Stephen King, which was actually confirmed by the author when he said that book did give him some inspiration for this story. But in no way are the stories similar beyond a bit of time travel.

This book is around 400 pages and yet I somehow managed to race through it in around 3 days, which is quick for me and my attention span! Part 1 in particular had me HOOKED. The backstory of Joseph's childhood and the events he endured whilst growing up was just captivating. However, I feel like I should warn potential readers that there are a number of rape scenes within this book. And it does get very intense and dark at times. The characters in particular tend to have quite racist viewpoints - but that's part of the plot. I feel like the author was using these rape scenes and race issues in order to really show us what led our protagonist down this path - although perhaps the rape scenes could just have been implied rather than described to us? Just a thought. The second part of the book, which centred around the actual time travel aspect, was slightly less interesting to me, but then I feel like it picked up again and the very ending of the book was brilliant.

The character development of the two main characters, Joseph and Alex, was very well executed. I felt so sorry for Joseph as a child and then as he grew up into the adult he became, I started to dislike the effect that Alex had on him *gives Alex the side-eye* but...then, I don't want to get into it too much as it will give things away!

I just really enjoyed this story that Pellegrini told - it was really unique and well-written. And it says a lot whenever I find it hard to put a book down, as my attention span is all over the place at times. On the whole, Pellegrini created a character in Joseph Bateman that was just very REAL. At times you hated him and then at other times you cheered him on - he just felt very human to me, as no one is perfect. Booth has a really strong plot and it's a great read if you're looking for something a bit different. It gets 4 stars out of 5 from me!


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