4 out of 4 stars
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Douglas (Doug) Faraday's childhood permanently changed when his family suddenly shattered due to a devastating revelation. Everything he had, including his privacy, was gone, and he had to start over in a new town, family and was severely traumatized. His aunt Lauren was incredibly patient with him and tried to help him cope with his struggles. In school, he underwent bullying and never made friends. Gradually, some level of calm returned to him as his life slowly unfolded. Doug developed a variety of coping mechanisms, including online research.
In the process, he stumbled upon an online journal by a girl named Courtney Bressler, who meticulously detailed her life. Passing curiosity soon turned into interest, and Doug religiously read her entries. He also followed her Facebook posts and felt like he already knew her. Over the years, Doug watched Courtney grow into a woman as he read her struggles and milestones. Doug's life was also unfolding, but at a slower pace due to his traumas and anxieties. However, things still happened, and he had his fair share of fun, thrill, and despair. Courtney was, however, still a fixture in his life, and it all came down to fate. Will their paths ever cross in the physical world?
Connectivity by Peter Rouleau is a highly descriptive read, starting with a thorough description of the characters. They all have distinct personalities, and their physical traits are easily perceivable. For instance, it is to note the loving nature of Aunt Lauren and the humility and regret Doug’s father harbors. The scenes are also in intricate descriptions, bringing out the changing environments and circumstances as the years unfold. The book also evokes several emotions in the reader, mainly empathy towards those with mental struggles. As Doug breaks down or relives his past, one feels his pain, anguish, and immense desire to heal.
My uttermost favorite part of the book is the loving family bond brought out by Mary and Lauren. The two women unconditionally love and dedicate themselves to the well-being of Doug and his mom. Nothing deters them from their commitment and quest to help the two lead full lives. I equally love the various mental trauma coping mechanisms highlighted through Doug's efforts and his support group. They include the National Suicide Crisis Hotline, support groups, online chats, among others. I have no complaints at all about the book. The journal-like format the book takes, where each chapter is a specific year in Doug's life, made the novel so real.
I found only two minor grammar errors, a testament to the book's professional editing. The language used is intelligible, with minor cases of profanity and tastefully described intimate scenes. Connectivity is an entertaining book about Doug’s life, the people he meets, and it maintains suspense about what happened to him and his family. It additionally serves as a guide and encouragement to those with traumas, making it an essential read. It contains encouraging quotes and messages that I found incredibly helpful. I gladly give it a rating of 4 out of 4 stars. The tantalizing conclusion also left me hopeful and with more questions. I recommend this delightful read to anyone looking for a short and fun read about true family love, forgiveness, overcoming one's shortcomings, and life’s curveballs.
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