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Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

This forum is for volunteer reviews by members of our review team. These reviews are done voluntarily by the reviewers and are published in this forum, separate from the official professional reviews. These reviews are kept separate primarily because the same book may be reviewed by many different reviewers.

Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#1 by AliceofX
» 15 Oct 2017, 11:49

[Following is a volunteer review of "Yesterday" by Samyann.]

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2 out of 4 stars
Review by AliceofX
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Yesterday by Samyann is the story of a young woman named Amanda. After she rescues the life of Mark, a Chicago police officer, they both become close. They can’t help the feeling that they’ve met before, that somehow they know each other. These thoughts lead Amanda to explore her past lives and go back to the time of the Civil War. With the help of her aunt Mary, a psychiatrist, she sees the life of Bonnie, a girl who lost everyone but her cousin Jack during the war, and how she learns to live with her loss.

Loss is a common theme in Amanda’s life. She has lost her parents, older brother, fiancée, and thinks she is cursed to lose everyone she loves. She is unwilling to start a relationship with Mark because she fears that she will lose him too. Exploring their past lives lets Amanda and Mark understand the ties that bind them, and eventually bring them together.

At its core, Yesterday is a love story. It’s the story of a man trying to convince a broken-hearted woman that she is not doomed to be alone all her life. Only secondly is it a historical novel. Not nearly enough time is devoted to Bonnie and her story. The story of how she eventually meets and falls in love with Daniel felt rushed and lacking the same feeling of realness as that of Amanda and Mark. Since Yesterday was advertised as a historical novel that fact kept me from really liking the book.

There are elements of fantasy in the book in the way that it treats past lives and people’s ability to remember them. At one point Mary says that past lives are nothing new to a practicing psychiatrist. Mark, who is supposed to be Catholic, sees no conflict between belief in reincarnation and his religion. Things like that really took away from the book’s realism. The supernatural parts were my least favorite aspect of the book.

However, leaving those problems behind, Yesterday was at times a very good story. I really empathized with Amanda and her pain. Hers is the type of story we would all love to have, where at our lowest point someone comes into our lives to love us and to rescue us from ourselves. I myself have never been a fan of love stories, but Yesterday felt really touching.

Overall, my rating for Yesterday is 2 out of 4 stars. If the book had fleshed out Bonnie’s story more and was more grounded in reality, then I think I would have liked it a lot more. Plus, I can’t shake the disappointment of being promised a historical novel and not getting one. If that’s what you’re looking for also, then I wouldn’t recommend Yesterday to you. It’s really a book for lovers of romantic stories.

******
Yesterday
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#2 by Mindi
» 16 Oct 2017, 13:02

I have recently read a few different reviews of this book, and I enjoy reading the different perspectives. It sounds like a book that may interest me. I enjoy historical fiction. I also enjoy romantic stories if they are done right.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#3 by ReyvrexQuestor Reyes
» 14 Nov 2017, 01:04

I am also a Catholic, but I believe in reincarnation. It is not so hard to reconcile reincarnation with the Church's teaching of eternal life since they both lead to the same glory, only in reincarnation, it takes a longer route (lol). There are strange stories of pre-existence described in Hindu books, and so this concept seems not so alien to people anymore. I like anyting belonging to this theme. Your review is very descriptive. Thanks.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#4 by AliceofX
» 14 Nov 2017, 12:04

ReyvrexQuestor Reyes wrote:It is not so hard to reconcile reincarnation with the Church's teaching of eternal life since they both lead to the same glory

While it's interesting to hear your view it is nevertheless against Catholic doctrine. 1013 of the Catechism says:
When "the single course of our earthly life" is completed, we shall not return to other earthly lives: "It is appointed for men to die once." There is no "reincarnation" after death.

I'm not a Catholic myself, but facts are facts.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#5 by ReyvrexQuestor Reyes
» 14 Nov 2017, 17:53

@AliceofX
With due respect for Theology, the promulgations are just man-made and sometimes ill-advised. Dogma is just that -- dogma. Remember the theological view of the universe, where the sun, moon, and stars revolve around the Earth? Well, that was the best cosmology at the time. Then came Copernicus saying different. Do you think the one-life doctrine seems unfair? How will it judge a 70-yr old man vis-a-vis a one-year-old when they both die? I am a Christian.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#6 by AliceofX
» 15 Nov 2017, 12:29

@ReyvrexQuestor Reyes
Well, now I'm rather confused. If someone says they're Catholic then it's natural to assume that they believe in the teachings of the church, so I couldn't understand how a Catholic could say he believed in reincarnation. I was curious at how one could reconcile such wildly different beliefs. Either one believes in the dogma of the church or one doesn't. I struggle to understand how there can be a middle way between the two.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#7 by ReyvrexQuestor Reyes
» 15 Nov 2017, 17:37

Well, which will you choose? After death, you are judged, or you will just be made to reincarnate and live over and over again? While in the Christian doctrine, you only live once. What if you were born in the cannibal tribes of Africa? Will that be all for your life? Will you get a chance to be born somewhere else, of a better environment? If you were born a girl, will you have better chances if born a boy next time? So, in reincarnation, you are sbjected to diverse stimuli and observed how you will behave. In the Christian doctrine, if you die while still a fetus, what experience did you have, if you will not be reincarnated to live much longer? If God is merciful, the existence of Hell is not consistent with that virtue. Just like you, if you particularly favor one dress, do you really have to condemn the other dresses you less favor? Or just recycle them. Reincarnation is recycling.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#8 by KlareAllison
» 15 Nov 2017, 18:24

Samyann's Yesterday has elements of the historical crafted into themes of love and care. I find the characters of Amanda and Mark very interesting. I enjoyed your review, AliceofX.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#9 by Luisacristina0407
» 16 Nov 2017, 07:50

Although i don't like reading serial killers books, what i read kept me really hooked up. I found it to be written on quite a describing way which i think was what hooked the reader through the story
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#10 by AliceofX
» 16 Nov 2017, 16:46

ReyvrexQuestor Reyes wrote:If God is merciful, the existence of Hell is not consistent with that virtue.

That's an opinion that many nowadays have. A counterargument I've heard is that God gave mankind free will to choose to love him or not, to want to be with God or not. That that's what hell is, just the complete absence of God. The argument goes that if everyone goes to heaven then doesn't that erase free will? And you still haven't answered my question as to how you consider yourself a Catholic and at the same time have beliefs that go against church teaching.
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Re: Review by AliceofX -- Yesterday by Samyann

Post Number:#11 by ReyvrexQuestor Reyes
» 16 Nov 2017, 22:44

AliceofX wrote:
ReyvrexQuestor Reyes wrote:If God is merciful, the existence of Hell is not consistent with that virtue.

And you still haven't answered my question as to how you consider yourself a Catholic and at the same time have beliefs that go against church teaching.



I like to think of myself as simply a Christian. Being of this faith Jesus Christ is the central figure. Let us just say, I am godly, but not religious. The Church has become dogmatic. Some of the doctrines change over time. That is true of the concept that only God is the absolute truth. The rest of the tenets and nuances are true relative to time and needs. I may be a separatist thinker, but didn't you remember that Christianity got divided over some issues circa, 400 A.D.? Heaven is not a bad idea. And Hell may be a "fly in the soup" of Heaven. But reincarnation could be a much better way to get there. If we are to be judged, after all, won't it be much better for our case to have the verdict based on so many lives instead of one? For instance, I will protest judgement of my life if I have been born, a son to a thief, whereas if my father was a pastor, don't you think I was a better fellow?
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