Eli Hagin can’t finish anything.
He hates his job, but can’t seem to quit. He doesn’t want to be with his girlfriend, but doesn’t know how to end things with her, either. Eli wants to write a novel, but he’s never taken a story beyond the first chapter.
Eli also has trouble separating reality from fiction.
When his best friend kills himself, Eli is motivated, for the first time in his life, to finally end something himself, just as Mike did…
Except sessions with his therapist suggest that Eli’s most recent ‘first chapters’ are not as fictitious as he had intended … and a series of text messages that Mike received before his death point to something much, much darker…
Hi and welcome to my review of Suicide Thursday!
Will Carver books are notoriously unreviewable but this one here takes the biscuit. But you know, it’s fine, I can manage, I’m fine, any minute now the words will come and I will write you the very best review I’ve ever written. Seriously, I promise, it’s all going to work out, I’m totally fine, I’m…
You don’t think I might be… *whispers* in denial?
What? No! Of course I’m not, just like Eli and Jackie and Mike, I’m perfectly fine, everything is splendid, I’m…
I’m bloody pissed off is what I am! I mean come on! Do you know how many times I’ve gone through this shit? Do you? No? Well let me tell you! This is the eighth time! The eighth time that I’m staring at my laptop screen hoping, praying to a god I don’t even believe in, that words might come. I mean, would it kill the man to, you know, write a normal book?! With like a beginning and an ending and stuff in between that makes perfect sense and that fits in a genre box and stays there until the final page and is NOT in that bloody unique voice and does NOT make you think and does NOT challenge you and does NOT leave you gaping like a fish?!
Come to think of it… I think he might be physically incapable of that. Huh. Perhaps I should just skip to acceptance and call it a day 🤷🏼♀️
Okay, well, there’s Eli and Mike and Jackie. Eli and Jackie are together, but Eli keeps going back and forth between loving her to bits and wanting to break up with her. That indecisiveness actually pretty much defines Eli. Once he’s committed, he can’t seem to break away, although not for lack of wanting, but he does have a hard time committing to anything in the first place. He wants to write a novel but he loses interest after chapter one, or he gets another idea that he likes more, so he has this whole collection of first chapters that never become more than single chapters. He hates his job and wants to quit but taking that first step is proving to be very difficult indeed.
And then Mike, Eli’s best friend, commits suicide. Is this what Eli wanted all along, did he want to be rid of Mike without having to do the heavy lifting himself? If not Eli, then who’s to blame? Could words kill? Did words kill? And might this event be the kick up the bum Eli needs to make some life-changing decisions too?
Obviously, this book and its topic, perhaps even its title, will be triggering. I do know a few people who chose to end their lives, I wasn’t exactly triggered by anything in the story, although it did of course remind me of the people I’ve lost this way. Some mere acquaintances, one a family member when I was too young to fully comprehend what had happened and one a friend who I’d seen struggle for years without being able to help her. The books you love the most are the ones that resonate with you and this could have been written about my friend:
Mike was in a state of despair. Disrepair. He had been trying for so long to ‘fix’ himself that he became even more lost than when he started. It got easier to give up on things.
Suicide aside, that wasn’t the only part of this story that resonated with me. Eli and his job? Ohmigod!
How every day it chips away at me. A small piece of me dies and will never return. I know that the constant dripping effect takes its toll on me. I know that it brings me down a little bit further than the day before. Each day, I get worse. Less empathetic. Less compassionate. More cynical. Less real.
That was me at my former job! I didn’t have a Danny (and for the record: thanks but no thanks, Will, allow me to speak for the Benelux and say we don’t want him either!) but that was exactly how I felt. (Yes, I was in fact that melodramatic, although I did put in more effort on the job than Eli, to be fair 😂)
Suicide Thursday is one that took a little longer to get under my skin than his previous books. It’s a bit of a sneaky book, it snuck up on me and I only noticed it there, under my skin, when I had to put it down to go to work and 1. I was extremely reluctant to do so, literally begging myself to squeeze in just one more chapter and 2. I kept thinking about it until I was able to pick it back up, some nine hours later.
Suicide Thursday is a thriller / drama / undefinable sort of book that tackles a heavy subject but is laced with this author’s trademark dark humour. Definitely one to add to your Orenda collection!
Nothing important happened today but it will on 24 November because that is when Suicide Thursday is out in digital formats and paperback! Pre-order directly from Orenda Books here.
Massive thanks to Orenda Books for the eARC. All opinions are my own.