After an uncharacteristic outburst at his own award ceremony, Vidor Kiraly is placed in an isolated psychiatric clinic in the Alps to await assessment. Director of the clinic, Anton Gessen, feels an unnatural connection to Vidor but feels he knows more about his condition than he lets on.
Thank you to Legend Press and Ann Gosslin for letting me be a part of this wonderful blog tour! The tour began yesterday and runs to mid-March! you can see who else is participating below!
This novel immediately intrigued me, it is not your usual psychological thriller. It focuses heavily on the mindset of the characters and the actual thought process (or lack thereof) as the narrative progresses. I found this endlessly fascinating, I've had a keen interest in the psychological aspects of a criminal ever since falling in love with Spencer Reid at fourteen. 'The Double' definitely gets you to think about the why instead of the how and Gosslin executes that with a perfect level of clinical detail without excluding those of us without a medical background.
As more and more is revealed about Vidor it's clear to see that the secrets ran deep. Paying attention to every single line of this book was imperative to pick up on each thread and how they came together to conclude the mystery surrounding him. In some ways this was great, I was completely submerged in the narrative and felt each emotion along with the character, however, it did mean that as a reader I needed to be in a very focused mood to get through it. As we all know, this isn't necessarily the mood we always find ourselves in and a lighter read would be preferable. Gosslin creates a setting that takes you away and whilst the snowcapped mountains and secluded atmosphere is a great setting for a thriller, the level of depth to the text wasn't fast-paced enough for me to call it that, a mystery would be better fitting.
Having a complete mystery surrounding not just Vidor but Gessen as well made for an interesting concept. It prompted the reader to query not just the suspected 'villain' of the piece but also the 'reliable professional' which, connected with the suspicious past of both, created a restless atmosphere that kept me reading. However, considering how eager the narrative had made me, left me slightly disappointed at the lack of solid conclusion. The novel to this point had been meticulous with detail and giving strong accounts of the character's thoughts and emotions but the ending felt rushed and inconclusive. That being said, it was did leave me guessing in such a way that I'm sure I know the outcome.
'The Double' is a very clever novel with an in-depth look at the actual conditions aggressive criminals may have. If you're at all interested in the psychological aspects of violent crime it's certainly one to add to your shelves.