I Know What I Saw is one of those rare treats, where you will convince yourself you’ve worked it all out…only to then be slipped a little detail that makes your theory untenable. This mercurial element comes from the shifting details provided by our narrator.
Our main character, Xander, is homeless and we follow him through what can best be described as a bewildering sequence of events. Attacked for invading another homeless man’s patch, Xander is forced to seek shelter one evening. He finds an open doorway, and keen to escape heavy rain he enters a house. While trying to dry off he falls asleep, and is woken by voices. Crouched behind a sofa he hears an argument and sees a woman being murdered.
When Xander goes to the police they have no evidence of a crime being committed. He is charged with wasting police time, and they are convinced his mental health is impacting on his ability to engage with his environment.
As we follow Xander through this experience, we learn more about his past. There’s clear signs of trauma, and indications that events in his life have impacted badly on him.
When the police reveal that Xander’s recollections of the crime match an unexplained accident that took place thirty years previously, he is charged with murder. His freedom depends on him being able to recall facts his brain does not seem able to process.
Once we’d got underway I found myself engrossed, desperate to work out what had happened. Not every question was answered, and there were clear signs that even by the end not everything had been tidily resolved. Xander remains something of an enigma, but this was still a great read.
Huge thanks to NetGalley for allowing me to read this before publication in exchange for my review.