Official Review: In All Things by Marta Curti

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Official Review: In All Things by Marta Curti

Post by bluemel4 » 08 Aug 2016, 08:39

[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "In All Things" by Marta Curti.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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In All Things by Marta Curti is a literary fiction novel with whimsical aspects about a woman’s journey to feel grounded, find love, and a safe place for her son to grow up. Themes include: filling emptiness, spirituality, miracles, wings and feathers, secrets, and self-realization.

Penny Rose, a product of the foster care system, feels unlovable, disconnected, and filled with self-doubt. As an adult she desperately searches to find a connection after years of neglect and verbal abuse. Her heart opens after she finds out she is pregnant and capable of loving a tiny version of herself. During her pregnancy, she creates strong bonds and becomes part of the community, making her own family out of friends. Unfortunately, tragedy strikes in the form of a deadly illness and she must race against time to find a family suitable to raise her son.

The writing is stunning and lyrical with a poetic flow to the entire novel. Woven into the story is a skillful application of symbolism (especially surrounding birds, trees, heartbeats, nature, etc.,) used to maximize the artistic tone and heighten the depth of literary quality. Curti created a masterpiece of spirituality, finding beauty in tragedy, and the joy of connection. The whimsical nature of the novel stands out in the way the story unfolds using non-linear chronology but feels completely organic. The time jumps are always anchored with a sense memory that helps keep it cohesively embedded within the confines of the story.

Curti uses first person and third person point of view throughout the novel. It was an effective way to get around the limitations of first person narration, while still allowing the reader to maintain an intimate relationship with the characters. The brief moments of omniscience deepened the story and overall message; the shifts were subtly done and at times difficult to notice.

A lot of wisdom and philosophical musings are shared within the pages of this novel. The most poignant is death is not the problem, it’s the people that are left behind. In All Things is beautifully crafted and an all encompassing read. The senses are engaged at every turn and the descriptions are unique, leaving the reader tingling with recognition.

The criticisms about the book are minor and mainly concern plot-holes. Penny’s identity seems to be a mystery even to the reader. Her facial features, hair color, eyes, and race are all missing, which made it difficult to picture what she looked like. This could be because the focus was more on her feelings of self rather than her actual appearance. Ethnicity and race are used to only point out minorities without first establishing what Penny’s race is or why the ethnicities mattered in relation to her. The other issue is a side character’s ability to jump from teen dropout to educator, which felt forced and rushed, taking the reader out of this stunning magical world and making them compare it to real-world expectations. This was a brief side trip and did not take away from the overall story.

I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I enjoyed this book so much I read it twice. The first time I was in awe of the writing style and had a difficult time noting the technical aspects of the writing. I became completely submerged in this book and had a hard time articulating exactly what made it so engrossing, breathtaking, enchanting, authentic, and visceral. The second time I read it I was able to pay more attention to all the fine details that make this novel successful. The book is substantial; there is a lot to mull over, analyze, and discuss, which makes it a perfect book club selection. Warning to sensitive readers: this book does contain many forms of abuse and sexual violence. It is not told graphically but it is scattered throughout the book.

******
In All Things
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Post by Clifora » 08 Aug 2016, 22:41

This book sounds really deep. If I could, I would definitely check this out. Thank you for the great review!
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Post by bluemel4 » 09 Aug 2016, 08:42

It's a fantastic read! I hope you get around to it and enjoy it. :D
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Post by CatInTheHat » 09 Aug 2016, 15:32

It says so much when you shared that you read the book twice. I will have to check it out!
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Post by bluemel4 » 09 Aug 2016, 17:49

Thank you! @CatInTheHat I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
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Post by hsimone » 10 Aug 2016, 01:59

Beautifully written, bluemel4! The book seems like one that will make the reader think. What I find the most enjoyable is how you mentioned the author's writing style. It sounds like a such a great read!

Congratulations to the author for receiving such a glowing review! :D
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Post by kimmyschemy06 » 10 Aug 2016, 07:59

Wow! Seems like an amazing book. It sounds interesting and endearing. Great job on the review. Congratulations to Marta Curti on such an obviously well written book.

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Post by bluemel4 » 10 Aug 2016, 08:59

hsimone wrote:Beautifully written, bluemel4! The book seems like one that will make the reader think. What I find the most enjoyable is how you mentioned the author's writing style. It sounds like a such a great read!

Congratulations to the author for receiving such a glowing review! :D
Thank you! @hsimone It is a a fantastic read! I honestly feel like if I read it a third time I could get even more from it.

-- Wed Aug 10, 2016 8:00 am --
kimmyschemy06 wrote:Wow! Seems like an amazing book. It sounds interesting and endearing. Great job on the review. Congratulations to Marta Curti on such an obviously well written book.
Thank you! @kimmyschemy06 It's a powerful read.
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Post by CrescentMoon » 10 Aug 2016, 16:19

This sounds like a really heart-warming, emotional story. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Congratulations to the author for such a great review!

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Post by bluemel4 » 10 Aug 2016, 18:27

CrescentMoon wrote:This sounds like a really heart-warming, emotional story. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Congratulations to the author for such a great review!
It's really great! Thank you for the comment. :D
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Post by gali » 11 Aug 2016, 22:54

Sounds like a good book. Not my cup of tea, but I am glad you enjoyed it.

Thank you for the excellent review!
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Post by klbradley » 13 Aug 2016, 17:40

I love when I can read a book twice and find something different in it the second time! Congrats to the author for receiving such a good rating! Great review!
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Post by bluemel4 » 13 Aug 2016, 17:46

gali wrote:Sounds like a good book. Not my cup of tea, but I am glad you enjoyed it.

Thank you for the excellent review!
Thank you! @gali

-- Sat Aug 13, 2016 4:49 pm --
klbradley wrote:I love when I can read a book twice and find something different in it the second time! Congrats to the author for receiving such a good rating! Great review!
Thank you! @klbradley I feel like I could find something new each time I read this! Every type of tree or bird mentioned could be analyzed for their literary symbolism.
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Post by debo9967 » 22 Aug 2016, 00:22

Fantastic review! This seems like a thought provoking book. I'll definitely check it out.
Congratulations to the author on a positive review :)

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Post by bluemel4 » 22 Aug 2016, 08:05

Thank you! I hope you enjoy it. It's one of my favorite books of the year!
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