Us People – Maxwell Gruber

DNF @ 35%

I’ve been trying to read this book since 2017. I read the first 20% and gave up in December because I couldn’t connect with any of the characters. I’d been interested in their story based on the blurb but found I didn’t care what happened to them once I started to get to know them. I hate that because I can usually connect with pretty much anything; if a character I like has an emotional connection to a blanket I’ll probably ugly cry if something happens to that blanket.

Since my first attempt I’ve gone back to this book many times and never made it much further. Thinking that surely some time and distance from it would change my mind I’ve tried again. I’m now stuck at 35% and I’m done trying to make this work.

My point of no return was when the main character wakes to a knife in their face and the person holding the knife explaining why:

“Well, when you grabbed that boy and tried to lift him off his feet, that made me feel a certain way. The type of way that makes you feel really, really good inside. So, me not knowing who you were, I wanted to get a better look at you. And let alone, my luck, my chance occurred. You walked right up to me trying to grab some bread. That was when I decided it was meant to be.”

That was when I finally decided that, try as I might, this is never going to be the book for me. I start every book planning on shouting about its brilliance from the rooftops and it always hurts when that’s not the case. I hope other readers do find the connections that I failed to.

Thank you to NetGalley and Clovercroft Publishing for the opportunity to read this book. I’m sorry it wasn’t for me.

Once Upon a Blurb

How far is a person willing to go to escape their own personal demons – the bottle, a drug, possibly a vacation? A past mired with trauma and heartbreak, Sam Case seeks what he believes will be the safety of the streets. A place to escape the demons that once haunted him and tugged at the deepest parts of his mind. Struggling to survive with the aid of his best friend Cam, a mentally unstable veteran, Sam finds solace amongst the chaos. Initially an escape from his past, the horrors of insanity and heartbreak coax him back towards confrontation. Sam must make an impossible choice – a stigmatised imprisonment or the freedom of the streets. 

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