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Book Review: Life And Other Near-Death Experiences by Camille Pagan

By Amazon, Books & Authors, ReviewsNo Comments
life-and-other-near-death-experiences-book-cover-camille-pagan Imagine that you go to the doctors and are told that you have a rare form of cancer, one that’s terminal. Then imagine going home to seek the solace of your husband, only for him to drop his own bombshell – that he’s been seeing a therapist and thinks that he might be gay. This is exactly what happens to Elizabeth (better known as Libby) Miller in Life And Other Near-Death Experiences by Camille Pagan.

Tom, Libby’s husband drops the I might be gay bombshell before she has chance to tell him about her cancer. So naturally her first reaction is to stab him with a fork. Libby encourages him to leave for his own safety and he obliges.

Then Libby makes some radical decisions: she quits her job working as a PA to nightmare boss Jackie, she puts the apartment up for sale and she speaks to Paul, her twin brother to get some advice about how much money she would need to live on for a year. Next she tells Tom of her intention to divorce him, knowing that she’ll probably not live long enough to go through the snail-paced legal process.

Libby knows cancer intimately. She watched it slowly take her mother from her, her brother and her father. Making her motherless at ten years old. So Libby decides not to tell anyone about her diagnosis.

After hearing about Tom and the divorce Libby’s father calls her. Libby talks about an idea she has to go to Mexico. Her father discourages her because that’s where Tom and she went on their honeymoon. Her father shares a memory he has of her mother and he going to Puerto Rico. He tells Libby that her mother loved it there. Libby decides to go there instead.

Libby has her first near-death experience getting to Puerto Rico on a small plane piloted by the sexy Shiloh. On the Island, Libby discovers what it is to live, fall in love and experience every moment fully.

Libby’s character is funny, feisty and fantastic. Pagan writes the story from Libby’s perspective and in doing so creates a character that oozes depth and realism. It’s not just Libby’s character that has depth and realism, so does love interest Shiloh, twin brother Paul (whom happens to be gay and is married to a man with two children) and all other characters.

Life And Other Near-Death Experiences is fast paced, has a fascinating plot, has beautiful description and is packed with dark humour. Pagan should be commended on this superb and captivating novel.

You can buy Life And Other Near-Death Experiences by Camille Pagan on Amazon and I highly recommend that you do. You’ll love this thoroughly entertaining read.

Review soon,

Antony

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Book Review: Above by Isla Morley

By Amazon, Books & Authors, ReviewsNo Comments
Above-Isla-Morely-Book-Cover Wow! Above by Isla Morley is amazing and phenomenal. I’ve never described a book as phenomenal before, but it really is the best word to describe this novel. You’ll be missing out on something incredible if you don’t read this story. Let me tell what it’s about:

Blythe is 16 years old when she is offered a lift home by librarian Dobbs. She accepts and he abducts her. Dobbs is convinced that the world is going to end and takes her to an underground missile silo. Below ground she shall live for years, have a child and eventually return Above ground. But will the world be as it was or how she imagines it to be? Above is Blythe’s story. If you think you’ve got an idea what’s going to happen – you really don’t.

Above is written from Blythe’s perspective and in present tense, which is excellent as it enables the reader to emotionally connect with her from the first page.

Blythe is a loveable character as is her son, Adam, who is born about midway through the book. Adam is wonderfully innocent, curious and stubborn. Traits that become clear when they finally escape the silo. All of the characters were well thought out and it was great to read their development throughout the story.

Above is perfectly paced and has a well plotted storyline. It was captivating and there were times I couldn’t put it down. It felt like an emotional roller coaster; every time something good would happen it was followed by something bad. I felt for Blythe who above ground discovers she has lost so much, but can’t give up or breakdown because of Adam.

The description is superb throughout with a Morley showing the story rather than telling it. There’s some particularly beautiful description, particularly when Blythe & Adam are above ground.

Above has been unfairly compared with Room by Emma Donoghue. Yes the idea starts similarly, but the telling and direction of Above are completely different. Above is darker, more beautiful and a somewhat sentimental read.

Above causes the reader to question and examine their own moral compass. It made me reconsider my perspectives on life and the world around me. Above is let down by a weak ending, one that left Marcus’ character at a loose end. However the reader can and does forgive Morley for this.

Above is an absolute must read and is available to buy on Amazon. Morley is such a fantastic storyteller that I will be buying Come Sunday, her first book and be keeping a close eye out for her next one.

Review soon,

Antony

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I aim for posts on this blog to be informative, educational and entertaining. If you have found this post useful or enjoyable, please consider making a contribution by Paypal:


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