4 out of 4 stars
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Geraldine is a beautiful love story between Tom and Geraldine written by Edmund M. Aristone. What makes the story special, is the love that bloomed where there was literally no hope. But despite that, they forged a union so beautiful. The setting of the story is in the late 20th century in Philadelphia.
Tom and Paula had been engaged with hopes of marrying soon. Tom worked as bartender though he was a doctor by profession. His residency had been suspended for fighting a medical officer and breaking his finger. Their relationship was on the rocks, leading Paula to terminate her pregnancy with Tom. Tom is distraught and goes to drink and disappear for three days. When he comes back to the apartment he shared with Paula, he finds her packing her belongings. She leaves in protest, and Tom realizes he needs to rethink his life in totality.
Days later, Paula calls a truce and they become friends again, to the point of her introducing other ladies to him. One of the ladies was a 22- year old lady called Geraldine. Tom and Geraldine begin a friendship that later blossoms to a beautiful love. The more Tom gets to know Geraldine, the more he realizes how Geraldine is a risk not only to herself, but to him too. Her friends were nothing short of crazies, who did unthinkable things. For instance, a couple - Virginia and Marshall walked in the way of a moving bus and were knocked down dead. Will Tom stick with her for better for worse?
My greatest takeaway from the book was just how fragile human beings are. The author writes, "...people, shallow bits of organs and bones wrapped in thin layers of skin. They were weak creatures in so many ways, vulnerable to many things, yet endowed with the ability to reason, feel, remember, and cry tears that oceans couldn't duplicate... Just fragile, insignificant beings of bones and organs wrapped in skin yet mysteriously possessing souls, that could move through time." The author through the story demonstrates how easy it is to lose our loved ones, and that we should treasure the moments we share with them.
The story is written from the third person's point of view. Inside it weighty issues like, mental illness, loss of loved ones and broken dreams have been tackled. I loved how there were different storylines that were intertwined with the main storyline to make the plot thick. The plot rolled out smoothly and had no layers. It was a pretty straightforward story. The author had a subltle way of revealing shocking incidents in the story.
I loved the story. The way the author tackled the weighty issues in the story was impeccable. I learnt the importance of a strong support system for people with mental issues, through the story of Tom and Geraldine. Another takeaway from the book was, one should learn to be accommodative of people with ideals, beliefs and lifestyles different from theirs. The book is a wake up call to people to start taking seriously mental health.
I rate the book 4 out of 4 stars. It is a simple book with complex themes. I recommend the book to fans of romance novels. I would not recommend it to a younger audience because of the sensitivity of the themes in the story. The book was definitely professionally edited. I found just one mistake. I did not dislike any aspect of the book.
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