Format: E-Galley, 496 Pages
Release Date: April 5, 2016
Publisher: Orbit Books
Genre: Thriller, Suspense
The unmissable and highly anticipated new literary thriller from the author of the international phenomenon The Girl With All the Gifts.
Fellside is a maximum security prison on the edge of the Yorkshire Moors. It's not the kind of place you'd want to end up. But it's where Jess Moulson could be spending the rest of her life.
It's a place where even the walls whisper.
And one voice belongs to a little boy with a message for Jess.
Will she listen?
Fellside, by author M.R. Carey, is what people are calling the long awaited follow up to one of my favorite books, The Girl With All the Gifts. Jess Moulson has been accused of deliberately setting a fire that scars her face horribly, injurers her drug dealing boyfriend, and kills a neighbor boy who was left alone at home. After being found guilty of murder after not putting up much of a fight, Jess ends up in the maximum security prison known as Fellside outside of Yorkshire.
Torn apart at the seams for what she's been found guilty of, Jess decides to take the road less traveled, and goes on a hunger strike hoping to die. Inside the prison, inmates start betting on when she will die. This is where things take a dip into the paranormal pool. Jess see's a shade that she quickly believes is Alex Beech, the boy that was killed in the fire that destroyed her flat. Alex has some interesting tidbits to share with Jess. Tidbits that bring her back from the brink of death, and a desire to see that Alex's death is vindicated one way or the other.
How can Jess redeem herself and find the person actually responsible for Alex's death when she's been labeled as being the Infernal Killer by everyone from the media to those in the prison, including the guards and inmates? How can someone who was so into Heroine actually care about someone else's life? How can Jess find any time to help Alex, when she is being beaten to a pulp, and blackmailed into helping run drugs? Jess's story isn't the only one that is explored by Carey.
Fellside is divided into several wards, and one of those wards Goodall, is being run by a powerful inmate named Harriet Grace who runs everything, including guards. There are actually several more characters that play pivotal and important roles into what happens with Jess, and how she chooses to see life after making so many dumb mistakes up to this point. Fellside is nothing like The Girl With All the Gifts, so let's put that out of your mind quickly. Some of my favorite reviewers have had similar issues with this book being slow moving, and switching from character to character too quickly.
After putting the pieces together for both Alex, and understanding that she needs help from her lawyers she treated unfairly, Jess's story pushes the envelope on a determined person who is willing to sacrifice everything for the memory of a little boy who no longer has a future. It can be said that this might even be Jess's bleeding heart story come to calling. This is a story that could have been, perhaps, a bit shorter if you cut a whole lot of middle stuff out of the picture.