In the first story of the compilation of the same name, The Pier Falls and Other Stories, Mark Haddon describes vividly and precisely what happens during a catastrophic event and how it affects the victims, responders, onlookers, and relations. The pier falling is definitely not pretty, and the story described the event so well that you can feel that lurching feeling in your stomach when you realized that you barely escaped Death and that you just got lucky.
How agitating it is to watch the death toll! Whether you’re tracking for statistics, actually witnessing the deaths, or being added to it, seeing the death toll rise by the minute is so unnerving, unsettling. Everything about the time the pier falls harbors traumatic images, and you never want to revisit that moment ever again.
Mark Haddon, I had so many feelings when I read The Pier Falls, and now I have recurring images of a pier falling in my mind. Grim, jarring, but well done.