This is a novel like few others. It is literary and honest and powerful in ways Harry Potter never was. This is not a story of magic. This is a big f*cking mirror that leaves you alternating between fascination and realizing you are experiencing the same morbid fascination reading this book as the petty people in the novel do with horror, pain and deep unrelenting sorrow. The first half was hard to read as there are many players and some are far too similar, but that is the point. I cried and read it in small chunks because it was just too painful and… well, unseemly. About halfway through I couldn’t let go and read for over 12 hours without a break, food or drink. The emotions came and came until it peaked in ragged sobs ripped from my chest that I couldn’t control. It’s written in a way that echoes classic literature from the 20’s but with a far more modern and provincial subject matter. I recommend it highly but know, this is not Harry Potter; this is better. So while imperfect, bleak, and lacking hope, I did enjoy it and it left a lasting impression.