Over the Edge by Brandilyn Collins
Posted by Ben Erlichman on June 9, 2011
Hi all. I’m very excited because next week on Thursday the Milwaukee area will host a very special guest: Brandilyn Collins, best-selling author of multiple suspense novels and her new novel Over the Edge. Today I’ll give you a short book review without spoiling any of it for you, I hope.
I’m a newbie to Brandilyn’s work. Before reading Over the Edge, I hadn’t really read much of anything by her, with the exception of a YA book she co-wrote with her daughter. I consider Over the Edge my first real plunge into her literature.
I knew the book was about Lyme’s disease, a sickness that Brandilyn herself has struggled with a few times in her life. Truth be told, I wasn’t too thrilled at the idea of reading a book about Lyme’s disease. Even though Brandilyn has a reputation for gripping suspense novels, I couldn’t imagine how Lyme’s disease would make for a good suspense novel. I thought I’d be bored out of my mind.
Well, I was wrong. Over the Edge is a well-written, hard-hitting story that clearly stems from the author’s personal experience with Lyme’s disease.
When the main character Janessa is infected with the disease by the bad guy (a disgruntled man whose wife died from Lyme’s disease because she was misdiagnosed), she rapidly deteriorates. Brandilyn’s descriptions of the disease’s effects on the main character are not only poignant but also precise. Many times when I was reading I could almost literally feel the perpetual haze Janessa in which seemed to be stuck.
I had no idea how debilitating Lyme’s disease actually could be until I read this book. Brandilyn describes the symptoms in such a way that I hope I never get it. Janessa grew weak, could barely walk most of the time, and had near constant discomfort. She was miserable, and Brandilyn captured the progression of her decline with clarity.
Bu Brandilyn is very mean to her characters. She, like many other suspense authors, is somewhat know for killing people in her books and doing other horrible things to them. I can’t blame her, though. As an action/adventure writer, I kill lots of characters too. In Over the Edge, however, Brandilyn’s murderous tendencies aren’t focused on people so much as they are on relationships, namely Janessa’s marriage.
Without spoiling anything for you, I can say that almost immediately after she contracts Lyme’s disease, Janessa’s marriage (to a Lyme’s disease doctor, one of the leading experts in the study of tick-borne illnesses) begins to fall apart. Her Lyme’s disease compounds the issue because her husband doesn’t believe she has Lyme’s disease and is just trying to pretend to have Lyme’s disease as leverage against him.
The book, as I said, is well-written. As a writer, I know a bit about plotting, and from reading Over the Edge, I can tell Brandilyn does too. The situation grows worse and worse for Janessa throughout the course of the book. Her health deteriorates, he marriage falters more and more (even as she tries to save it), and she faces the danger of losing her daughter indefinitely. Everything, of course, comes to a riveting climax that you just can’t miss.
In short, I would definitely recommend this book. It’s a good read. I devoured it in one sitting, in one evening, and I’m not really a fast reader, either. Brandilyn’s expert writing
kept my fingers turning the pages, and I suspect it will be the same for you.
This entry was posted on June 9, 2011 at 11:37 AM and is filed under Authors, Book Reviews, Life Experiences, Writing. Tagged: B&H Fiction, Ben Erlichman, book review, Brandilyn, Brandilyn Collins, Christian fiction, Collins, fiction, In the Fray, Lyme, Lyme's Disease, Lyme-Literate Doctor, novel, Over the Edge, Suspense Fiction. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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