Member Review

Jack Was Here

by
Pub Date

Review by

Nigel M, Reviewer

Last updated on 03 Apr 2018

I Recommend This Book

Maybe

This is a missing person search conducted by an unusual hero. His name is Hugh Fitzgerald . He is an ex-soldier suffering severely from stress and depression after one tour too many in Afghanistan. He spends his days drinking, drug -taking and generally ruining his life. Then, out of the blue, he is asked by close family friends if he would go out to Thailand and find their son who is out there on holiday. Uncharacteristically  he has not made contact for weeks and had been scheduled to return 3 weeks previously.  Maybe it is the amount of money offered or perhaps it is that Hugh is just looking for a way out of his depressing existence but , for whatever reason, he decides to go. Does he find the boy? Does he find himself? These twin searches form the heart  of the novel but, one thing is for sure, it's a grim and gritty search undertaken in a beautiful yet very dangerous part of the world. 
Bardsley paints a vivid picture of Thailand and Cambodia but the romance and beauty of these countries is continuously counter-balanced by his ruthless description of how depression dominates, and indeed takes over, Hugh's life. Not a book to be taken lightly as we now know, all too well, the long term affects war has on soldiers. In many cases, although they return home alive, in reality they have lost their lives.

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