Tag Archives: unreliable narrator

The NeverMind of Brian Hildebrand by Martin Myers—pub date July 17, 2018

Brian Hildebrand becomes conscious a few days after a bizarre car accident involving him and his car after he stepped out of it. However, this conscious state does not equate to him awaking from a coma. Though psychic, his mother cannot reach him, but her mother’s intuition tells her that he’s in there, aware and listening. An unreliable narrator, he enlightens the reader upon his favorite caregiver, a mysterious stranger, ghosts, psychic connections, and the various new and unorthodox treatments to unlock him.

Myers creates a colorful character, haphazard in his sharing, building tension as a man locked in with his constant thoughts, seeking aid everywhere, even psychically and through spirits of the recently and not-so-recently deceased. His supporting cast comes through his tunnel vision—well-developed characters as seen through the lens (literally, as his eyes are open, doubtful in real life) of his limited vision: mom, mysterious stranger, amaaaazing caregiver, and various possible saviors. Having invested oneself in the possibility of recovery for this locked in protagonist, and slogged through the frustrated attempts and helplessness of him and his cheerleaders, the morphing of this story into metafiction disappoints. I was fortunate to receive this fantastic story turned metafiction from the publisher through NetGalley. Maybe it was all a dream after all.

Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney

Amber comes to from a coma, but realizes that she is not awake, only aware. While in her hospital bed, she hears her husband and sister discuss mysterious happenings related to her car accident. Flashbacks to a week before bring the reader up to date slowly through an unreliable narrator. Journal entries from childhood fill in blanks and spew a haze of ambiguity regarding the sisters, until the reader is delightfully confused and enlightened repeatedly, like the proverbial roller coaster ride. Feeney plops out a big, ole’ shocker at the end—twice!—that makes the reader go, “Hmm…” It’s a fun read and worth the time to try to figure out what’s going on between the sisters, and if anyone is trustworthy, or if all of them are constantly scheming. The journal is brilliantly done, without revealing anything. Much murder and mayhem ensue, beyond the family, a deliciously wicked family. I was fortunate to receive an advanced copy from the publisher of this fantastic novel.