While the Turner family are enjoying a family barbecue, the last thing they expect is a dying man arriving at their gate saying, “Help me!” Has he arrived at their house by chance or is there more to it? Soon, the family sense that they are being watched, but put it down to a sense of paranoia after the barbecue incident. Little do they know that they have every right to feel paranoid as, in the days that follow, they experience fear like they have never felt before. Who is causing this misery and will they manage to survive?
From the outset, Tom Bale draws you right into the story, creating an air of mystery with regards to the dying man. You can feel the anguish of the family as they fail to save him and also the fear that maybe, somehow, his turning up at their gate was no accident. You are also aware that there are a lot of secrets running through the family; from early on, in particular, we discover that there is something in the father’s past that he would prefer not to resurface. Other family members have their secrets, however, and the author manages to steer you off in the wrong direction so that the reveal towards the end is a genuine surprise.
Despite their mysterious backgrounds, the Turner family are very real, likeable characters. I particularly enjoyed the character of Georgia who, despite her traumatic earlier life, fights back against the odds. The way she overcomes her fears in order to display huge strength of character was a joy to read. The character of Josh was also well-written – it is easy to see how a young man at university may fall into his predicament!
All Fall Down is, at times, genuinely terrifying and the author builds up the tension in such as way that pages became turned very quickly as I was desperate to find out what happened next. There is, at times, a high level of violence, but this is integral to the plot. I foresee lots of readers anxiously checking that all windows and doors are locked after reading this book!
With thanks to Net Galley and Bookouture for a copy of this book which is available from 1st September 2016 from Amazon.