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With each character given their own first-person sections, the author allows us to experience the events as they unfold and we live through their unusual ways of perceiving the world. This story revolves around the way Jared, Deirdre, and Eena affect each other. At first, each are encapsulated in their own limited and private worlds. As the story progresses sensualist Jared, pragmatic Deirdre and analytical Eena develop into their mult-faceted selves. Their interactions from their first meeting begin to shape their perceptions. At first, the changes are subtle, almost non-existent, and yet, they grow, and we realize how profound they are by the end of the book.
And they grow on the reader. At the beginning, the characters were not exactly likeable. Their observations were clouded by the singular way they tended to view their world. Mark Saba has a remarkable grasp on creating these characters despite their almost one-dimensional aspects as they are introduced. But, just as with anyone we meet in real life, we learn more about them as we progress through the story. And they learn more about themselves as they learn about each other. It is their interactions, good, bad, and indifferent, which allow them to develop more depth. They begin to take on some of the characteristics of the others. They become complete within themselves because of their need for each other. Their worlds, while not perfect, are less insular, more engaging, and fraught with difficulties.
Mark Saba is a masterful storyteller. He weaves the three first-person narratives into a beautiful tapestry which, like any good artist knows, is never finished but merely abandoned. It may raise more questions than it answers, but in that way it mirrors life. He balances and counterbalances the differences and the similarities of the characters until they reach a tipping point.
A reader can choose to engage in this character-driven novel simply for entertainment or they can continue to return to it and find truths they can apply to their own lives. While the former is satisfying enough, I think the reader owes it to themselves to dig deeper. There is a philosophical bent to this piece that we can apply to our own lives. How does our daily interactions, miniscule as they might be, affect our own psyche and growth, and that of the people who we pass each day? For Jared and Eena their journey began with an accidental encounter, and for Jared and Deirdre it began with an awakening of a memory.
This book is ideal for the reader who enjoys diving into the realities of other minds. It is not a fast-paced action drama and, like most books, it would not appeal to everyone. However, I think it offers something beautiful for those who wish to read it with an open mind, heart and senses. I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to find out more about themselves and imagine more about those they meet every day. I certainly will be reading it again and again.
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