* Perfect Christmas gift, very much a ‘Dad/husband’ book.
This is a big book. A very, very engrossing book.
The Father by Anton Svensson is a chilling novel that goes into excruciating detail when describing a family history so violent that there is no escape from it.
Three brothers who grew up fending for themselves against not only their peers but also their own father, mature into young men who know only violence as a means to getting what they want. Based on the incredible true story of Sweden’s most notorious bank robbers, the author melds fiction to his own reality – The Military Gang, so-called by the Swedish media, were his own brothers and father.
This unfathomable reality has served to create a stunning, albeit brutal novel. The immense detail in the planning of the many robberies is offset by the stark emotional blankness of the eldest brother, and ringleader, Leo, who struggles to maintain even one personal relationship independent from those he shares with his brothers Felix and Vincent.
The indifference with which the three brothers and one of their childhood friends committed the many robberies made for a slow start to the book for me. It took me a while to get invested but The Father soon became more than difficult to put down.
The authors- there are actually two – weave the historical background of the family seamlessly into the narrative which ends in a climax seemingly destined for the big screen.
This is a freaking awesome book, I loved it. It’s firmly a thriller with all of the elements of a classical tragedy at play.
Published by Hachette New Zealand, August 2015 $34.99 RRP