Book Title: All Fall Down
Author: Tom Bale
Genres: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense, Crime Fiction
Date Read: 08/10/16
Pub Date: 09/01/16
You tried to save a life. Now you’re fighting to save your own.
It should have been an idyllic day for the Turner family – until a dying man, beaten beyond all recognition, arrives at their home, uttering the words, HELP ME.
Rob and Wendy Turner and their children try to explain away the horrific scene as being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but in the days that follow their lives are threatened in ways they could never imagine.
The family is unaware that they are being watched by someone with their own terrifying agenda, who will stop at nothing to fulfil their own twisted desires.
But when hidden secrets come rushing to the surface, it’s clear not everything is as it seems in this happy family. Are the Turners a victim of circumstance – or does the key to their fate lie closer to home?
Forced to fight for everything they hold dear, can they save themselves before time runs out – or will their act of compassion see them paying the ultimate price…?
Once again, Tom Bale has masterfully woven together a tale of heart stopping suspense! Back in May I read his previous work with Bookouture, See How They Run, and was absolutely hooked. I almost didn’t pick that one up due to the content and having a baby at home myself, but I’m so glad I did; it ended up being one of my favorite reads of 2016! All Fall Down is an altogether different direction of story, but no less appealing to those looking for a tantalizing thriller.
Let’s begin with the plot. This book has a slightly different feel than his last; while it is entirely gripping and enthralling, the pacing was completely different. In his first book, the story begins with a bang and the pacing is break neck speed from the first page to the last. Here we have an event that is chilling and noteworthy in the beginning, but the pacing during the first half of the book is more of a steady building; a slower, more methodical piecing together of past and present events that give us background and substance that lead us to the last half, which of course is hold your breath/grip your seat/grind your teeth worthy. I really enjoyed how the author was able to show that he can write just as arresting of a story in a completely different format.
The characters were also a change of pace in this new book. If you read the note in the afterward from Tom, he states how he wanted to write another book in the same family of genre with different elements. In his first book, we follow a young family with a baby; in All Fall Down, here we have a more mature, established family with older children and an entirely different set of challenges and problems. These characters were easy to relate to as a fellow parent; I found myself quite frequently wanting to pull mom Wendy aside for a chat and ask for advice on how to raise girls. We completely get to know these characters who are real, but also really flawed. I found myself wondering constantly what I would do if a situation like this ever happened involving my own family, which made the ending something to ponder for a long time coming. I also loved how he added in the element of what goes into fostering and adopting a child, especially a child involved in such a traumatic past. Fostering/adoption are both subjects near and dear to my heart, so this will always be a plus to me in the stories I read.
Another minor point of appeal to me was that I felt the length of the book was perfect. According to my kindle, it came out to 398 pages, but this also included all the afterwards and an excerpt of See How They Run. I felt it wasn’t too long nor short-just right says this Goldilocks. And that cover? Absolute perfection! This was another knock out from Tom Bale; I honestly can’t decide which book of his I like more so I’ll just have to settle for a tie of first place. I don’t say this often, but he is one of the authors that I would purchase his book without even reading the summary first, his books are THAT good. Just go ahead and buy both books and ready yourself for a binge reading (Just ask Noelle Holten @ Crime Book Junkie) because you won’t be disappointed.
*I received my copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. I’m also excited to be a part of Tom Bale’s Blog Tour on September 2nd!
About The Author:
Tom Bale decided that he wanted to be an author from the age of seven but, after another career got in the way, it wasn’t until much later that his dream was fulfilled. After several books with Random House, Tom signed with Bookouture for two stunning ‘everyman’ thrillers.