Official Review: The Extraordinary Journey of Vivienne Ma...

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Official Review: The Extraordinary Journey of Vivienne Ma...

Post by katiesquilts » 05 Jul 2018, 22:31

[Following is an official review of "The Extraordinary Journey of Vivienne Marshall" by Shannon Kirk.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Vivienne Marshall is 35 years old. She's on her way home from work, checking her phone while walking, when she's sideswiped by a car and gets sent to the ICU. Her diagnosis is grim, and while she lies dying, she's visited by her not-husband (it's a long story that eventually gets told), her son, and her flamboyant nurse from the South. Even as her life continues in the real world, she's sucked into an afterlife where she's met by her childhood sweetheart, Noah. There, Noah tells her that before she dies, she's allowed to view other people's Heavens and use them for inspiration before choosing one of her own. She isn't allowed to view the Heavens of close family members, so instead she visits the Heavens of a priest, her best friend, a homeless child she saw abroad once, and the man who got away but left her with a precious gift.

The Extraordinary Journey of Vivienne Marshall, written by Shannon Kirk, is different from the norm in so many ways. Vivienne must accept that she is dying, but in return she experiences so much freedom and learns so much from the people she visits in their afterlives. The connections between the Heavens are surreal, making the reader wonder just how life after death works, especially since items from the real world end up in the priest's Heaven and the dead seem to have no problem coming and going from one Heaven to another. Not only that, but the book has so many different stories going on at once, in the past, present, and future. Despite that and the large cast of characters, the novel isn't confusing in the least.

I almost want to compare Kirk to a spider because of the way she was able to weave so many storylines together in a perfect web. Each character had a backstory that made them easy to remember and empathize with, but not all of their stories led right back to Vivienne. Some of them, such as with her nurse, were placed out on the edge of the web, only the thinnest of lines tying them back into the main story. This was the most intriguing part of the novel for me, and I groaned in frustration when Vivienne was jerked in and out of consciousness, knowing that I would have to wait to read the continuation of that person's story.

All-in-all, the characters were unique and completely relatable. The only thing that bothered me a bit was Kirk's writing style, which took some time to get used to. To be honest there's nothing wrong with her style, it's just not my personal preference. I don't think other readers would have a problem with it. Most of the errors I found were related to punctuation and verb tense usage.

I struggled a lot in deciding whether to give the book 3 or 4 stars. It took me a while to get into the writing style and start liking Vivienne as a person (especially after witnessing the stupid mistake that caused her death) but once I was over those hurdles, I found that the book truly was interesting and memorable. I would definitely watch it if it were made into a movie. I honestly wish I could give it 3.5 stars because my issues with the novel were resolved halfway through, but in the end I decided to give The Extraordinary Journey of Vivienne Marshall 3 out of 4 stars. The book is PG-13 and can be enjoyed by readers of all ages. I would highly recommend it to readers who enjoy touching tales and surreal stories with many secrets and plot twists.

The Extraordinary Journey of Vivienne Marshall
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Post by ParadoxicalWoman » 07 Jul 2018, 00:23

The plot sounds unusual. I would like to check this out. Thank you for your review.
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Post by Nyam Theresa » 07 Jul 2018, 02:11

the story is quite touching i cant wait to really read this book nice review you really touched main points. thank you so much

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Post by Sheilayano » 07 Jul 2018, 02:26

This book's review is very interesting and out of the norm can't wait to read it.

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Post by al_princessg » 07 Jul 2018, 03:42

the chance of seeing things you dont see and experiencing them before you die is one lucky chance but acceptance of dying after a great experience would make you want to live again

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Post by osayuwamen6 » 07 Jul 2018, 05:43

Nice review! The book it's about a girl that had an heavenly experience before death who wasn't allowed to view the heaven's of her close family members, now one can learn what it's like in an out-of-body experience. I can't wait to read this Book.

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Post by Faithmwangi » 07 Jul 2018, 07:28

Thank you for the review. This book sounds like a thrill and I like how the author managed to write about the past, present and future and also properly develop the characters at the same time. Life after death, looking forward to reading it.

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Post by crediblereading2 » 07 Jul 2018, 10:21

I get thrills just from reading your review of this book. The author is indeed an artistic genius as depicted by her concept of the after-life. Great review.

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Post by Cecilia_L » 07 Jul 2018, 12:19

This sounds like a really creative read with food for thought. I appreciate your excellent review!

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Post by KristyKhem » 07 Jul 2018, 15:40

Loved how you used the analogy of a spider to demonstrate the author's skill!

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Post by Nidaconhh » 10 Jul 2018, 08:59

Excellent review for a brilliant author! The book sounds too interesting and out of norm story. My next wish list.

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