The Spaces In Between by Collin Van Reenan ** Blog Tour Review** #TheSpacesInBetween
Welcome to my stop on the blog tour to celebrate Collin Van Reenan's The Spaces In Between which will be published by Red Door Publishing on February 15th 2018.
There is Truth and there are Lies; there is Fiction and there is Fact; there is Life and there is Death.
And then there are the Spaces in Between.
Paris, 1968. Nicholas finds himself broke, without papers and on the verge of being deported back to England. Seeking to stay in France, Nicholas takes a three-month contract as an English tutor to the 17-year-old Imperial Highness Natalya. It is the perfect solution; free room and board, his wages saved, and a place to hide from police raids. All that is asked of Nicholas is to obey the lifestyle of the household and not to leave the grounds.
It should have solved all his problems…
The Spaces In Between details the experience of Nicholas as he finds himself an unwitting prisoner within an aristocratic household, apparently frozen in time, surrounded by macabre and eccentric personalities who seem determined to drag him to the point of insanity. Much deeper runs a question every reader is left to ponder - if this tale is fact and not fiction, then what motivation could have driven his tormenters?
What an unusual book this turned out to be. Written as Nicholas' first hand account as told to his psychiatrist, you feel from the start that in Nicholas, you have an unreliable narrator. From the start, you have to weigh up his version of events and in fact, I was never too sure what was real and what was fiction- exactly as the author intended, I'm sure. There are plenty of clues at the beginning that Nicholas should not take up the offer of the job as tutor to Natalya, yet of course, inevitably, he does.
The other inhabitants of the house seem odd and eccentric. In complying with the rules of the household, Nicholas enters into the strangest of situations, as it seems frozen in the nineteenth century. This isolates Nicholas and you can't help but wonder if this is a true account, if this actually could have happened. The story keeps you guessing as to whether it is a supernatural, gothic horror, a mystery, a psychological thriller or a true factual account. In the writing style, I found echoes of Edgar Allan Poe who wrote of the macabre and the unknown.
In short: prepare to meet a household like no other!
About the Author
Only with the passing of time and the current less hostile attitude towards psychosis and the supernatural, has Collin Van Reenan felt able to tell his story. After the events recounted in the book, Collin returned to England and for many years worked as a Police Officer both in London and in Paris, and then as an Interpreter/translator for the Home Office, the Police, and the Courts of Law, mainly Bow St. and The Old Bailey. Before that, he worked in many jobs including being an interpreter at the Old Bailey trial for the murder of Victoria Climbie and the ‘body in the suitcase’ murder in York.
You can follow Collin Van Reenan here: Goodreads
Book Links to pre-order: Amazon UK
Thanks to the author and Anna Burtt of Red Door Publishing for a copy of the book and a place on the tour.
Check out these great bloggers!