You know when you start a book, and you think you know what’s going to happen? And most of the way through, it’s just as you expect. But then BAM something happens that changes everything and it isn’t what you expected at all? That’s exactly what reading Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller was like. This is a spoiler-free review!
Peggy lives in London with her parents. Her mother is a famous pianist and her father hangs around men who call themselves survivalists. One day when Peggy’s mother is away, her father takes her from their home. They travel far into the woods to a dilapidated cabin. There’s a horrible storm, and the next day her father tells Peggy that they are the last two surviving people in the world. Peggy lives in the cabin with him for nine years. The narrative perspective switches between young Peggy in the woods and Peggy nine years later.
I’ll admit I mostly read this because I’m really eager to read Bitter Orange by Fuller. This book isn’t perfect, but it has all the right elements that kept me engaged and satisfied- great writing, a slower, character driven plot, and a big twist at the end. It also reminded me of a fictionalized version of Educated, which I loved. There’s something endlessly fascinating about cults, survivalists in particular.
It’s difficult to discuss this book without revealing the twist at the end, which I don’t want to spoil. Here’s what I will say— this is an interesting blending of fairytale and reality that explores the boundaries of love, the effect of music on the mind, and the blurriness between truth and lies. This is a book that will mess with your head and stay with you.
VERDICT: 4 out of 5 books