The Last Thing to Burn by Will Dean
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

If you haven’t managed to read The Last Thing to Burn this year, then I strongly recommend this book tops your list for 2022. It’s a masterpiece. Profoundly affecting, it looks at a subject many of us look away from, perhaps simply because we can’t grasp the enormity and reality of it, that of human trafficking, reminding us that it’s here, right in our own back yards. The writing is intimate, sharp, clever and utterly compelling, the narrative voice transporting us into Jane’s dark and claustrophobic world with her. She endures so much at the hands of her ‘husband’. Torture like the slow drip of a tap. A sudden single act of incomprehensible violence that will cause your heart to stop beating. Far from a woman who is crushed by the absolute physical control her captor has over her, we see her strength as she determines to hold on to her sense of self, no matter how much he strips away from her. She is not Jane. She is Thanh Dao. She is not his. She will never be. Brilliant, I think sums this book up.

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