I upped this to 5 stars. Any book that lingers and wiggles its way into my brain like this one has gets 5 stars.
Mr. Arvin has created a complete new Arvin-ism??? I lack the language, but he has created a vision, a place or non place??? It is complete. I can see it, the pictures he created are that vivid. He leaves an element of otherness, or lingering question, yet complete at the same time. I know, I make no sense.
I want to go back now and reread some philosophers and theologians from my undergraduate days to be able to revisit the foundations to this work. It seems the author was inspired by many to create this place, this afterlife...yet he owes no one credit. It is his own.
Some of the prose are exceptional. The command of language, the ability to describe . . . Amazing.
Again, this is not a romance. The relationships that struck me, that touched me, that ripped at my soul were in fact not romantic love at all. Yes, the MC Joe has the love of his life in Lou, but they are never the focus here. They are not supposed to be. That is clearly not the author's purpose.
The author is using story telling to show the reader his vision, or a vision.
Fascinating. Mesmerizing. Puzzling.
Any read that makes me want to retake philosophy courses???? Yeah. READ this!! But read it with proper expectations for what it is . . .
Here are my original thoughts, mind-numbing . . .
It is after midnight and. . . Yeah. I need some sleep and maybe dig out my philosophy notes from college. I think the theology ones may be useless still . . .
The next day . . .and i still have no idea how to rate this.
The first question I wrestle with is...what the hell was this??? I think this was the author's story version of A concept of the afterlife. He attempts to answer questions such as What happens when we die? What happens to our interpersonal connection? What about fire, brimstone, judgement day? Purgatory? Also, what about Memories? Pain? Guilt? Love? Reincarnation? Loss? The author answers that here as we see Joe walk his journey..... All of those questions are answered. This pulled me in and compelled me to keep reading . . .
The next question is what this book is not. It is NOT paranormal romance. Sure, there is love, there are some sex moments, but this is NOT a romance novel. It is a philosophy/theology book hidden in descriptive story telling. Yes, there were times where the descriptions dragged for me, where I already had such a vivid sense of the landscape in my mind's eye that I got bored with all the descriptions. But, damn, did it suck me in. Was some of this predictable? Yes. Once I got a feel for the author's vision, I could sense the pieces coming together. I was also left with an incredible sense of melancholy. The idea that happiness and contentment only came in the afterlife, killed me. Damn, I cried ugly tears in a few spots.
This is between a 4 and 5 star read for me. Bonus points for such originality in the story telling. Some of the prose, some of the descriptions here are amazing!! So bonus points for that . . . .
Agh . . .no clue how to rate this . . . .