#Review: The Nightmares of Caitlin Lockyer by Demelza Carlton
4 stars for concept
2 stars for execution
At the start of the book we are introduced to the two central characters: Caitlin Lockyer and Nathan. The opening is successful as it draws the reader in due to intrigue. The story is told from Nathan’s perspective and we see his reaction to unfolding events and hear his inner thoughts. Nathan’s narration is interspersed with separate chapters outlining Caitlin’s nightmares.
This is where I feel problems creep in as the format begins to feel too repetitive. It could have benefited from interspersing with nuggets of Nathan’s backstory – just enough to further beguile the reader.
The further into the story you get the less this format grates as the reasons for Caitlin’s trauma are gradually revealed. The suspense does however feel rather forced. In a novel of this type there is always the need to create tension but then there’s the danger of a writing trick being overplayed.
There are also problems with character as the book progresses. Nathan’s voice becomes irritating and Caitlin begins to behave in ways which I find unconvincing. The ending of the book has not had the same attention to detail in the edit as the first third obviously did.
Subsidiary characters come and go in rapid succession. Some have clearly been fleshed out in the writer’s mind and their purpose in the plot is clear while others are left sadly hanging and then reintroduced later with gay abandon simply to further the plot it would seem.
The final feeling at close of reading was that the writer was thinking more about the series to come than the book currently in play. This prevents the book from fulfilling its true potential.