Official Review: Love Across Lifetimes by Debby Ng

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KristyKhem
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Official Review: Love Across Lifetimes by Debby Ng

Post by KristyKhem » 18 Jan 2019, 16:12

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Love Across Lifetimes" by Debby Ng.]
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2 out of 4 stars
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Love Across Lifetimes is a romance story by Debbie Ng. The story follows Raphaela, a young woman with a troubled past. Years ago, she ran away from home to escape abuse and neglect. Now, her life is great. She has a circle of supportive friends, she’s continuing her education, and she is following her passion for horseback riding. She is also pursuing a relationship with someone. In the midst of this, she meets a handsome cowboy named Octavio. The connection she has with him is very intense. She feels like they have a deep soul connection, almost as if they have been with each other in a past life. This feeling causes her to break up with her boyfriend. Before long, she is swept up in a whirlwind romance with Octavio. However, many challenges await these two lovers before they can be together forever. The question is whether they will be able to overcome them in this lifetime.

What I liked most about this story was the exotic setting. The story was set on the beautiful islands of Hawaii. I enjoyed reading about the different islands, the beaches, the food, and the culture of the Hawaiian people. One of the most interesting Hawaiian traditions I learned of was that relatives scatter shredded plumeria flowers in the ocean to honor the life of a deceased loved one. Portuguese and Native American elements were also included in the story. These made the book more culturally dynamic and interesting.

Another thing that I liked about this book was that the author made the book seem more than just a simple romance story. She did this by including poems at the beginning of each chapter. There was also a request for readers to look up the lyrics of a particular song which embodied the love between Raphaela and Octavio. This was the first time I read a book where an author incorporated music and poetry together with storytelling. Furthermore, astrology and reincarnation were integrated into the story. This gave it a mystical twist. I was fascinated by these aspects of Raphaela and Octavio’s love.

What I liked least about this book was the author’s conversational style of writing. This resulted in a story that was written very informally. Some sentences were lengthy and incoherent. A few of the terms used were also informal, such as ‘chicken skin’ which referred to goosebumps and ‘slippahs’ which referred to ‘slippers’. Additionally, the second half of the book seemed slow because the author included many insignificant details of the characters’ lives. Whether Raphaela brushed her teeth, overslept or took a shower wasn’t really relevant to the story. These details only prolonged the book unnecessarily.

Furthermore, I did not appreciate the multitude of errors that detracted from my reading experience. The two main types of errors I noticed were run-on lines and poor punctuation such as missing apostrophes. This combination of errors, the informal writing style, and the inclusion of irrelevant details made the entire book seem messy. However, these were balanced out by the exotic setting and the incorporation of poetry, music, and mysticism. Therefore, I am rating this book 2 out of 4 stars. Love Across Lifetimes will appeal to adult readers who like romance stories with a twist, but people who don’t like reading about abuse, neglect, and infidelity may not enjoy this book at all.

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Love Across Lifetimes
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Post by Faithmwangi » 20 Jan 2019, 14:47

Just by reading the review I have also learnt something new about the Hawaiian people. The book seems to have a lot of errors though, something I consider a put-off. I think I will skip this one. Thank you for the review though.
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Post by Jaime Lync » 20 Jan 2019, 14:57

Great review, I clearly understand why you rated it 2 out of 4. I once thought that adding irrelevant scenes into a story may make it seem more like real life in the sense that those kinds of circumstances happen in life - stuff that just doesn't fit at all...but having read a couple of light novels where the author does that, I do think it is kinda annoying now..
The poetry and music bit sounds fun.
Thanks for sharing.

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Post by bluedragonsii » 20 Jan 2019, 20:59

A story about soul mates is an interesting premise. The incorporation of music and poetry seems an intriguing way to approach highlighting the romance.

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Post by Anthony__ » 21 Jan 2019, 02:04

Great review! I also love the fact that the novel is cultural dynamic. One gets to learn one or two things from Hawaiian traditions, Portuguese etc. However, based on my graphic design knowledge, the cover page does not describe the content of the book.

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Post by Willy 1 » 21 Jan 2019, 09:06

The book seems to have lots of errors. But I appreciate a well-written romance novel. Raphaela and Octavio's love story feels like a fairy tale, though it has a few challenges, with the right person by you, it gets easier. Good review.

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Post by KristyKhem » 21 Jan 2019, 10:50

Thank you all for commenting :) I appreciate that you took the time to read my review and share your thoughts.

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Post by Itskai88 » 21 Jan 2019, 11:34

it sounds like the story and the settings of this book is beautiful, it is a shame that there where many distractions. i would still like to know how Raphaela's story ends. thanks for the lovely review

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Post by Jessacardinal » 21 Jan 2019, 14:02

I am not a fan of overabundant detail. However, as a lover of most music, I think I would enjoy pausing to listen to the suggested lyrics. Music seems to have a way of stirring up memories and drawing one deeply into a story. What a great idea by the author!
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Post by Nyambura Githui » 21 Jan 2019, 15:27

By reading the review I've learnt about a Hawaiian tradition. Great review, but am not much into romance books so I'll pass.

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Post by kdstrack » 21 Jan 2019, 16:50

The author has included some interesting elements in this book. The poetry and the setting are an intriguing way to highlight the romance. Thanks for a great review.

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Post by kandscreeley » 21 Jan 2019, 19:07

Editing is so simple. I wish more authors would do that before submitting their books. Nevertheless, it's not a book for me. I like the Hawaiian setting and the horseback riding. Romance isn't my genre, though. Thanks.
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Post by nonamer_miss » 21 Jan 2019, 19:18

Thanks for the review! I like books who will educate you about different cultures.

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Post by KristyKhem » 22 Jan 2019, 07:01

nonamer_miss wrote:
21 Jan 2019, 19:18
Thanks for the review! I like books who will educate you about different cultures.
So do I! Thanks for commenting!

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Post by Fuzaila » 22 Jan 2019, 11:56

I think an informal language is necessary to accurately portray significant parts of one's culture. Otherwise, every book will have the same monotone. I understand why you might not have liked them though. Loved reading your review!

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