5 September 2013

Review: PRIMAL, D. A. Serra

  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1478198036
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Perry Street Pictures, Inc. (May 13, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.Kindle
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00839M7AQ
  • Source: review copy supplied by author.
  • Read an extract on author site
Synopsis (Amazon)

The writer who made you laugh with Punky Brewster, who made you cry with Just Ask My Children, will now make you cringe with PRIMAL. This story was originally purchased by one of America's most prestigious storytellers James Cameron.

What if the worst happens and you are not a cop, or a spy with weapons training and an iron heart? What if you're a schoolteacher - a mother? In this gritty crime thriller a family vacation takes a vicious turn when a fishing camp is invaded by four armed men. With nothing except her brains, her will, and the element of surprise on her side, Alison must kill or watch her family die. And then - things get worse.

My Take

Alison is just an ordinary Mum, an elementary school teacher in fact, who isn't much of an outdoors person, who would rather sit in an easy chair while her husband and son enjoy boating and fishing. But the Burne family put an end to those plans when they invade the fishing camp where Alison and her family are meant to be spending a few days.

The real tension in PRIMAL begins where most novels would wind the story up. Even so what happens initially to Alison and her family is horrifying enough to evoke Alison's primal instincts to protect her family. But then, perhaps a bit predictably, the horror isn't over, and Alison's primal instincts remain at the surface. Alison's husband and son are making a good recovery from their ordeal, but, just as clearly, Alison is not.

Perhaps, like me, your mind will come up with a scenario for the second half of the novel, but you'll  have to keep reading to see if you are right.

I'm not sure whether "enjoy" is the right word for reading a novel like PRIMAL. One review site I saw had it rated as "R". That seems a rather extreme reaction to me, but it certainly is a novel that requires the reader to make a personal response, to question whether their own primal instincts would surface in the same way under similar provocation.

My rating: 4.5

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Visit Deborah Serra's website

1 comment:

Margot Kinberg said...

Kerrie - That sounds like one of those books that one shouldn't read too many of in a row. I don't mean because the book's not well-written. But intense books like that can be (well for me anyway) a bit much if one reads too many at once. Still, this one sounds like an intense look at our survival instinct. Interesting...

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