Who I'm Not - Ted Staunton
The cover is almost as unsettling as the concept. I didn't know much about this work, but when I went to the TD Book Awards gala last November, I couldn't help but pick the book up.
I won't lie, I wasn't sure what to expect from Staunton's work. I haven't read anything of his before, so my expectations were non-existent. I really enjoyed it! The concept was intriguing, the characterization was rich with detail, and the pacing was swift. I found myself pulled into Danny's story with little effort on my own part. Though Danny is ultimately (sort of) redeemed, he is a rather unlikeable character for much of the novel, but the complexity of his change over the course of the book will be a huge draw.
The secondary plot wasn't, perhaps, my favourite part of the novel, but I know it is crucial to the ending and it did work for the most part. I wanted a bit more in terms of a resolution, I think. I understand why Staunton left the ending more ambiguous, but I can't help feeling that there could have been more examination of the events surrounding Danny and, well, Danny (don't worry, I'm not ruining everything!) Perhaps it just felt like the last few chapters were rushed toward a resolution instead of being fully examined.
This is definitely a page turner, and the exploration of the foster care system is actually quite interesting. Even more unsettling than the events within the novel is the fact that the novel is based on real life events about a french teen con artist. It's a darn good novel, as far as I'm concerned!