Yesterday I finished Kate Harrison's Self-Preservation Society and it was utterly brilliant. There are many things I could say about the story but I think the most important is that I truly cared about the characters. Jo could have been tough take as her view on life tends to piss one off but from the moment her voice appears on the page I loved her. I was happy to follow her through her journey and so wanted life to be OK for her.
When I stand back and look at the skill needed to achieve this I am in awe. I can find first person view point overwhelming but I never became tired of Jo's voice. The humour made it easy and took you through some pretty heavy issues that gave the story some of its depth. Kate has a way of picking up small details as well that enrich the story telling no end. Finally the secondary characters and their stories just made the whole story more meaty for lack of a better word. The twists she put in were great.
Aside from Jo my favorite character was Frisky but I don't want to give the story away if you haven't read it, but READ it. It is a pleasure and from a critical point of view it is skillfully done.