Innsirkling 3 by Carl Frode Tiller

So this is my review of Innsirkling 3, I finished a series. Go me.

The book
This is the concluding novel in the trilogy Innsirkling by Carl Frode Tiller. The premise is that a man named David who has lost his memory, and a newspaper small ad asks people to send him letters. This book is focused on Marius, the man who was exchanged for David in the hospital when they were born, and Susanne, David’s ex-girlfriend when they were in their 20s-ish. The last person we focus on is David himself. And the mystery of David is revealed. Because through the whole trilogy you’re not entirely sure if David has actually lost his memory, or if this is just a scam.

Okay so here’s the thing. Every single character in this trilogy is an awful person. They’re just horrible people. Not just slightly flawed, they’re awful. And I hate them. Especially because they don’t seem to be aware of their awful-ness, they mostly seem to feel like the world has fucked them over, and it’s not their fault. And I hate them.

This isn’t a deal breaker by the way, I quite enjoy hating the characters I read about. That makes me sound like a crazy person. And while they’re awful people, they also have redeeming qualities, and I often understand the reasons why they do the awful things they do. There is a scene in Susanne’s part of the book and she is at dinner with her sister. Her perfect, beautiful, sister who is always sort of lording over Susanne, not overtly, just little jabs. And she’s married and everything, but she tries to flirt with their waiter by pretending to mix up her credit card with her gym card. Which is one, obnoxious, two slightly pathetic and sad, but also sort of understandable. She’s in her fifties, and she wants to be admired and found attractive by a young, handsome man. Also, Susanne indicated that she thought the waiter was hot, so why not show up her as well? It’s great.

During all the books it’s told that David has this art project going, he’s a novelist, and it’s implied that this memory loss is his project. That isn’t resolved until this novel. I found the solution, or explanation, I guess, really interesting. Tiller is really good at keeping you on your toes. The art project is really interesting, and I’ve used “interesting” a lot. It’s sort of implied throughout what might be the explanation, or what happened, and you’re sort of nervous about what’s going to happen, or what happened. And it’s uncomfortable.

I think David is an incredibly fascinating character. He’s very entitled and self-involved. He’s passive aggressive, and unpleasant, and I don’t see why he has a girlfriend, because I’m sure she could do better. He assumes the worst of absolutely everyone, I’m pretty sure because he assumes everyone is like him. Tiller is a skilled writer in that he makes me both hate this man, and also feel sorry for him, and want to know what happens to him, and how he feels. It’s weird.

I feel like Susanne is pretty much borderline crazy for what she does. It’s really weird, it’s also sort of genius in a way. Because it leads to us, and David, finding out what people do to him, and it’s a very interesting way to build up a character, because he won’t be censored by his own opinions and thoughts. It’s obviously censored anyway, because the people writing David will probably try to put themselves in the best possible light, and they don’t know everything about David. But you get a very detailed description from a lot of perspectives, which is great. Also. After reading what David did to Susanne I understand why she wants revenge. I understand why she’s furious and hurt and why she’s sad. And while she’s sort of crazy, I wanted to know if it gave her closure in anyway. Also, her ex boyfriend, who she was with before David, is awful and I hate him so much. Good God.

The characters are awful humans, but they are fascinating, and well developed and incredible. The writing is strong, and it’s badass, and Tiller is such and exceptional writer. I was a bit underwhelmed by the other book of his I read, but this is a solid trilogy. It’s very good.