Maybe this wouldn't bother other readers, but I've got the kind of mind that goes Que? What colour is a sad ocean? I wonder, can oceans be even be sad? What colour are that character's eyes again? Shouldn't that be something more about the look in her eyes rather than the colour? Ok woah, where am I in this page, where was I up to?' This happened so often in the book that I kind of wished the author hadn't even bothered and just got on with telling the (very interesting) story and left the metaphors alone. Or his editor was a bit more forceful with their big red pen. Of all the characters in the book, Simon is the most developed. He really reads like an eleven year old bookish boy trapped in a terrible nightmare, and is the great strength of the book. The other characters are interesting and have what appear to be great back stories, but they don't get fleshed out properly. They also don't go through any kind of real evolution or realisation which kind of makes the back story irrelevant. This is another reason why I felt the book straddles the line of being just a good story and being literary. It's kind of like a straightforward thriller but then there are all these more literary techniques which are included but aren't very strong or are not completed. However, the story itself is good.