Fiction · Reviews

Symbiosis | Guy Portman | Review

I was fortunate enough to have been given the opportunity to read Symbiosis in exchange for an honest review.

A huge thank you to Guy for the opportunity to read this!

I  was gifted this book in February but as I was having a bit of a break from the blog, I had put it firmly on top of my reading list. When I picked this up last week, it took me a grand total of 4 days to read it. I gobbled it up faster than is healthy.

Image Credit: Amazon

A fascinating look at the lives of twins Taliah and Talulah, Symbiosis explores the complicated and tumultuous physical and psychological relationships between twins. I found myself drawn into the twins’ psyche and their attempts at finding their own identities outside of twinship.

The twins are far from popular, with various communication and behavioural issues, much to the bemusement of their school teachers and classmates. They appear introverted when we first meet them as teenagers and their unresponsiveness to external stimuli is quite unsettling. For some reason an image of the twins from The Shining just popped into my head! Creepy children in films or books make the hairs on the back of my neck stand up…

That cover is creepy enough in itself thanks.

I really enjoyed the way in which Taliah and Talulah interacted with each other and communicated in their own language or cryptophasia (a word you hear referenced quite a bit in the book). The differences between the twins become more apparent as the story progresses but the way in which the differences are introduced are subtle yet poignant. Out of nowhere, a series of events threatens to tear the sisters’ worlds apart and their relatively introverted lives are shaken up forever.

You won’t find a whiff of a spoiler in this review!

One of my gripes with the story was the fact that I expected that I would understand more of the twins’ cryptophasia as things progressed. However, I found myself struggling a little to understand parts of it which I feel would have offered more insight into the mind of the twins and given more context to some of the events that were taking place. Perhaps this was a deliberate attempt by Guy to keep the reader guessing? Either way, it was a minor inconvenience when there was such an underlying sinister tone to the book that kept me reading at the edge of my seat.

Leafy Rating: 3/5 Green Leaf clip artGreen Leaf clip artGreen Leaf clip art

A thoroughly voyeuristic, rollercoaster of a read which I would recommend to anyone. I’m giving it 3 leaves as I wished I understood more of the secret language. However, there was some truly detailed psychological insight offered here and I feel that this would appeal to anyone.


Have you read any of Guy’s books? Have you read this one? What did you think?

I’ve also been recommended Necropolis by David of CrimeFictionLover via Twitter, who has posted a rather interesting review of the book. Devereux sounds like such a unique character. Thanks David!

symbiosis tweet

Till next post,

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