The October List by Jeffery Deaver
I had no idea what to expect when I got this book. Of course I expected nothing less than classic Deaver twists and turns. I got all that and way more. Since I first heard about this book I had read a few descriptions, and it never registered that it was described as a novel in reverse. I was thrown off when I opened the book and instead of a title page or copyright page I just saw Chapter 36. The book nerd in me was really excited when I flipped to the back of the book and there was all the copyright pages and titles pages as well as a table of contents with titles for each picture before each chapter.
That's right I said pictures before each chapter. Jeffery Deaver took his camera and did some photo journalism to go along with the story. I would highly recommend not reading the titles for the pictures becasue it does give away what each chapter is about. Since the table of contents is in the back I don't think that will be a problem unless you cheat. The pictures do reveal their own clues if you can figure them out. Some of the pictures I think only Deaver knew what they meant, because I couldn't figure it out even after reading the chapter.
When you are reading a book in reverse the story can be a bit disjointed. You read a chapter and events move forward, but then the next chapter takes you back an hour or so before what you just read. Then as you read further you catch up to what you just read. It was an adjustment, but after a few chapters I definitely got the hang of it.
Here's what makes reading this book in reverse so interesting. You know what happens but not how or why it happened. Here's an example, and I'm not giving anything away. The main character Gabriela is said to keep wiping blood from the corners of her mouth, and she is holding her side. That's all you know when you start reading this. I kept trying to figure out what kind of injury could possibly cause her to cough up blood, and why she would be holding her side. I kept reading just so I could fill in those types of gaps. This fact alone made this a book I really couldn't put down. Deaver's level of suspense was so intense that I couldn't turn the pages fast enough to find out what happened before what I just read. I know this doesn't make any sense but know that Deaver makes this work.
I want to say so much more about how amazing this book is, but I am afraid I will give something away, and I can't ruin the fun for any future readers out there. Even if I did include spoiler alerts in this post it would go on and on for pages. All you really need to know is that this book is absolutely amazing. I am giving this a full 5 out of 5 stars and would even give this a 6th if possible. This is one of my favorite books, and I am suffering a massive book hangover. I never wanted this one to end. To anyone who likes to read you need to check this book out.
I also want to mention that this is my fourth book of four in the Peril in the First for the RIP challenge. I have completed this challenge with the perfect book. Check out the challenge at Stainless Steel Droppings, there is still time to enter. The challenge goes until October 31, 2013.