I absolutely loved Our Endless Numbered Days – I read it straight through and thought about reading it again. Not that reading a book straight through is that unusual for me – but I mean straight through – don’t put it down for anything!
In 1970’s London, eight-year-old Peggy Hillcoat lives a somewhat contented life with her survivalist father and her concert pianist mother. You know that things are bit off – but those of us that lived in the 70’s will totally understand the “weirdness”.
When Peggy’s mother goes on tour, her father abruptly kidnaps and they begin a long trek into the dark world of survival. Her father claims that the world has ended and that her mother, along with every other human on Earth, has died. She believes, of course, and adjusts to a life in the cold, remote woods with her mentally unstable father, little food, and no medical care.
Our Endless Numbered Days, gracefully manages to seesaw back and forth between two different time periods, the year’s in the forest with her father and the year of her return to London. The story is not about how horrid an experience can be, but how resourceful and resilient the human psyche can become in order to survive. There are no labored explanations of characters emotion or of why things happen, this talented writer simply shows you life and manages to invoke genuine feeling from the reader.
It’s weird and wild and sometimes terrifying book, but it’s also beautiful and heartbreaking and breathlessly alive. It will keep you turning the pages, and long afterwards it will keep you turning this story over in your mind and thinking about the events in this haunting story.