3 out of 4 stars
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Life is certainly filled with ups and downs and was it not Shakespeare who said that this world is all but a stage, the people in it mainly players where there are many exits and entrances and in which a man in his time plays many parts. We all have many parts to play in this stage of life but perhaps what binds us all is the common quest for happiness, fulfillment, freedom and love. We may not find what we seek or we may come to find that what we seek has always been with us but whichever, we all at one time or the other must come to understand that ‘happily ever after’ was only a myth and that happiness and freedom must after all be a thing of the mind.
In R.I Alyaseer and A.I Alyaseer’s My Trip to Adele, we are introduced to three characters. First is Elias, an expatriate worker living in Rome. He returns to his country, Morocco, after 8 years to search for his lost love, Malika, only to discover that she was long gone. Buoyed by the hope of meeting her; to extricate his burden of regret; to stamp out all doubt, he searches for her all over and beyond their beloved city of Marrakesh, Morocco. Nadia is a single parent divorced from her husband shortly after pregnancy who single handedly raises up her son. In her quest for freedom from her selfish husband, for herself and her son, she’s about to find out what freedom and dignity is and at what cost it can be had. Yaser is a married man, living in Las Vegas. He is unhappy with his married life and carries within him doubts, pains and agony hidden under a façade of calmness. He must find a way to let go of all the turbulent and conflicting emotions that plague him and secure or lose his marriage. These 3 groups of characters all share a love of Adele and their quest for freedom and love will lead them to an Adele concert held in Verona, Italy. But will they make it in time to the concert? Will they find what they seek? You’ll have to read this book to find out.
I’m not really a fan of Adele, I can’t even tell her voice from other female singers so when I first saw this book, it seemed like a good opportunity to acquaint myself with the singer and I dare say, that now, I’m an Adele fan for life. I knew before hand that the book had an amazing feel to it but I was not expecting this. The plot is suspense-full right from the beginning. I must confess here that out of sheer excitement and anxiety, I almost flipped to the end. The plot is well-paced, engaging and progressively flows to a laudable ending. Adele’s lyrics are expertly woven into the fabrics of the writing. The writing is also embellished with paradoxes, similes and humor, my favorite being: ’My friend, Vegas is the city of pleasure, not sin, and anyway, sin is nothing but pleasure’ (loc. Pg 94).
My Trip To Adele is a fiction book of gritty-realism. Although it’s full of flash backs, it’s by no means boring. Oh! You should see how effortlessly the authors switch from present to past and back. The characters were carefully chiseled out and as I got nearer to the end, I began to appreciate the characters the more. The lyrical style and the Imagery are even more superb. I felt like I was in Yaser’s mind, I understood all his doubts and related perfectly with him. I was on the mountain with Elias when he discovered the somewhat horrible open-secret; I wept when he did and followed him about helplessly searching for Malika. I identified with Nadia trying to define her dignity and freedom especially with opposition from all sides.
I found the other characters to be uniquely interesting and I would have loved more detailing on Kanza and Veronica especially on their relation with Elias but as the story seemed to revolve around the lead characters, it was not much of a problem. There is a hint, just a hint of black magic which might not appeal to all. Some portions are excellently punctuated while some are not. There are missing commas, wrong spellings like think instead of thing (loc. Pg 186), omissions like ‘what sort blind law’ (loc. Pg 181), grammatical errors and repetitions but fortunately, it didn’t disrupt my reading. A commentary from the authors explains that the book was originally written in Arabic and subsequently translated and self-published in English. Given this, the errors are not surprising and can be easily corrected if professionally edited and that the novel still retains its rich content is commendable. While I didn’t like the ending, I consoled myself with the thought that the inspiration for the book came from Adele and should be all about her.
My trip to Adele is a story of faith, promise and love. The plot is well interlinked; the characters well developed and relatable. I would’ve given this book a rating of 4 stars but the reviewer in me would not because it seems the book was not professionally edited. I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars and recommend it to teens and young couples, fans of Adele and all who don’t mind a curiously-written, embellished and multi-faceted read.
My Trip To Adele
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