3 out of 4 stars
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What would you do if you found out your hero dad wasn’t actually your dad? Well, that was the situation the narrator of this book found himself in when he discovered he was the product of his mum's past affair. You see, his mother had cheated on her husband with another guy, and she had gotten pregnant with him in the process. The narrator does not find out about this until his mother drops the bomb on him, and suddenly, it feels as though his world were crumbling around him.
In Teething Problems, written by Mark Fletcher, you are taken on a journey into the consciousness of the narrator, a guy in his twenties, as he deals with the heartbreaking news that his hero dad may not be his real dad. Throughout the book, you will follow the narrator’s train of thought as he tries to process the shocking revelation and decide whether he will choose his hero dad or the new guy who claims to be his real dad. Which choice do you think the narrator will make? Ah, the only way you can find out is to read the book.
All in all, Teething Problems is an entertaining novel that you can devour in one sitting. Indeed, that’s what I liked most about it. I found myself curled up in my bed one evening and running through the pages to find out the decision the narrator made in the end.
Furthermore, written in the first person, it felt as though the narrator were speaking directly to me, as though we were having a personal conversation. This made the book more engaging and thrilling for me. Also, some part of the book was written as a stream-of-conscious monologue, which made it easier to understand the narrator on a deeper level. I could relate to his story in a way that made the novel a tad more personal for me.
Nevertheless, I have to admit that I had one issue with Teething Problems. The narrator tended to provide too much detail before getting to the main point, which sometimes got me lost and confused. Take, for example, the following sentence: "On the left side and at the back of the top shelf of the hall cupboard, in the part, the cavity, behind the wall and not right in front of the door where most things in the cupboard are stored (p. 27).” Apart from this, however, I enjoyed the rest of the book.
Considering the above points, I rate Teething Problems 3 out of 4 stars. I deducted one star because of the issue I had with it. Further, I would recommend the novel to anyone who enjoys stream-of-consciousness narratives. More broadly, anyone who enjoys reading entertaining short novels would love this book. I would not, however, recommend it to people younger than 18, as the book contains a lot of expletives.
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