Author: Ryan Vanderford
Date of Publication: May 12, 2013
Formats Available: E-book
Buy This Book: Amazon
Synopsis: Roy is a cynical lazy car thief, a drug addict who wants nothing more than to stop his bouts of mania with chemicals. When our narrator’s estranged junkie friend gets in trouble with a drug kingpin, he’s pulled into a chain of events that he is ill prepared for with his best friend Aidan, who is keeping a secret that will rock the foundation of his world.
Featuring a raunchy attitude, violence, a dash of psychedelics, a rejection of conformity, and a raw look into the human condition, enter this drug soaked novel at your own peril. This is the roller coaster story of a man living in modern America trying to keep his head above water.
When I started this novel I wasn't really sure how I would feel about it; I'd never read a book anything like The Reptile and honestly it wasn't really something that I would have picked up on my own. However, the more I read the more I found myself fascinated by the story. Gritty and dark this novel provided a whole new look on the life of a drug addict and the things one would have to do to survive.
One of the things I liked best about this novel was the new perspective. I really enjoyed being able to see things from Roy's point of view and watch how quickly one decision would escalate whole string of events. Shocking and eye opening this novel was full of violence, crime, and addiction with no detail left unstated. Sometimes watching Roy and his friends make the decisions they were making was hard, and sometimes the outcomes were startling, but I think that's one of the things I liked most about this novel. The shock factor made this novel interesting to read because I never knew what was going to happen next and what the outcome of each decision would ultimately lead to.
I definitely wasn't expecting to like the characters as much as I did. At school we're always taught about the dangers of drugs and drug addicts and after a while we stop thinking of these people as real, we see them as evil people who have no other thoughts than drugs and corrupting others. However, as the novel went on I started to see Roy as a real person, not just an addiction. Even though he made a lot of bad decisions he still had bits of his personality that I could relate to and his own redeeming qualities that made him seem real, not just a human front for an addiction.
The thing that made this novel really come together was the great writing. I don't think I would have enjoyed this novel as much as I had without how engaging the writing was. Vanderford has a real talent for writing and character development and that was the major thing that made this novel as great as it was. Vanderford isn't afraid to write about shocking subjects and his writing style reflects that perfectly. Part of the reason I liked this novel so much was the writing, it was truly what made the novel.
Anyone on the lookout for a shocking and eye opening read on the consequences of drug addiction need search no further. I would definitely recommend this novel to people interested in learning about the lifestyle of someone constantly searching for that next fix or just interested in seeing the world from another perspective.
*I received a copy of this novel from the author/publicist/publisher in exchange for a free and honest review.