Review: The Collector – John Fowles

Overdue Review… Oh dear! Seriously, I’ve gone a whole month with ZERO internet connection, so I’m now only just managing to post all of my reviews of books I read last month!

Ah well, better late than never, I suppose? Apologies to my followers for the lack of posting, my Instagram and Twitter accounts have felt the blow too… 😰

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Synopsis: Withdrawn, uneducated and unloved, Frederick collects butterflies and takes photographs. He is obsessed with a beautiful stranger, the art student Miranda. When he wins the pools he buys a remote Sussex house and calmly abducts Miranda, believing she will grow to love him in time. Alone and desperate, Miranda must struggle to overcome her own prejudices and contempt if she is understand her captor, and so gain her freedom.

So, my overall thoughts on this book are kind of a mixed bag. On one hand, I thought it was great – reading from the perspective of a kidnapper is one that I haven’t experienced before… I have to say it was very interesting. A little creepy, yes, but strangely brilliant. I was really able to tap into his mind, and actually found that I was wanting to agree with his justification for doing it. Obviously in real life, I would 100% NOT agree, but here it was… Well… Odd.

On the other hand, reading from the perspective of the girl held in captivity, so to speak, was irritating. I didn’t like her. Which was upsetting because I wanted to like her so I could fight for her voice and want her to escape. But actually I found her really annoying and wanted her to stay shut up in that tiny room… I’m not a psycho, I swear. But this is the reason I’m on the fence about whether or not I fully loved this book.

I was recommended this book by 3 different booksellers in the bookstore, so I had super high expectations of it, and really wanted to love it! When I first started reading, I flew through it, the first 100 pages or so we’re thrilling, and I couldn’t put it down! But as it went on, I found myself getting sluggish and a little bored with listening to the girl, Miranda, whinging all the time. (Unpopular opinion, maybe?) I didn’t have any empathy for her at all. The end was worth persevering for though I have to say.

It’s worth the read, I’d definitely recommend it, but just maybe don’t go in with super high expectations like I did.

I’ve heard people say that if you’re going to go for anything Fowles, The Magus is his best, although slightly outdated and pretentious. Maybe reading The Collector first was the best option..? Can anyone who has read both give any insight? Am I missing something here?

View The Collector on Goodreads

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