Sunday, March 22, 2015

Thoughts on The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffeneggger

“I'm sorry. I didn't know you were coming or I'd have cleaned up a little more. My life, I mean, not just the apartment.” (Audrey Niffenegger, The Time Traveler's Wife)

The Time Traveler's Wife
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffeneger is a novel about Henry, a time traveler, and his wife Clare. Henry has Chrono-Displacement Disorder. It causes his genetic clock to reset and as a result he travels through time. He gets pulled to moments of emotional gravity. For instance, his mother’s death, his wedding, and so on. After meeting his wife he finds himself travelling to her past, when she was a little girl as young as six years old. He visits her regularly as she is growing up. With every visit he get to know his wife and himself a little better. The story takes a turn for the worse when they find out that if they don’t find a way to stop Henry from time travelling, it will end up killing him.

The story of Henry and Clare is heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. It is amazing how Audrey Niffeneger accomplished to write a story that is so complicated in such a way that it is still easy to follow and it makes perfect sense. She jumped from time to time almost every other paragraph and still everything fit perfectly. Unfortunately, sometimes it fit too perfectly. The story contains some amazing plot twists, but they were often too predictable because of the way the story was told. This did however contribute to the feeling of helplessness, that nothing could be done. The characters knew that there were some horrible events to come, but they couldn’t do anything to stop it from happening. Everything was inevitable and nothing could ever be changed, because everything had already happened somewhere in another time.

I highly recommend this book. It tells a beautiful story and the way it is brought to the reader definitely deserves some appreciation.

P.S.: The movie does the book justice. So, even if you are not going to read it. At least watch the movie.



Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Thoughts on The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom

“Each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one.” (The Five People You Meet in Heaven, Mitch Albom)

The FivePeople You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom tells the story of a Eddie, a wounded war veteran. After the war he came back home and started working at an amusement where he spend the rest of his days working as a maintenance man. On his 83rd birthday a tragic accident happens at the amusement park. One of the attractions broke causing a cart to fall down to the ground. The main character, Eddie, pushed a little girl, who was going to be crushed by the cart if he hadn’t done so, out of the way. By doing this he himself got killed and ended up in the afterlife.

At the beginning at the book you get the impression that Eddie is just another insignificant person who has died. However, nothing is less true. As you read you witness him meeting people whom he has had an impacted on or whom have had an impacted on him throughout his life. As it turns out, every life is connected with another and therefore, every life matters in some way.

There is a lot of prejudice surrounding this book. People do not want to pick it up because they think the subject is too heavy, or they do not want someone else’s beliefs forced on them. I am not going to lie. It is a heavy subject. It is also a subject that is usually associated with religious beliefs. However, Mitch Albom managed to  avoid all of this. The religious aspect of it all is close to non-existent. The only thing this book does is assure you that whatever comes next, it will be ok.

I loved reading this book. It is one of those stories that makes you feel warm inside and satisfied with what you have got. I encourage anyone to read the book. And I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.



Thursday, February 26, 2015

Thoughts on The Tiny Wife by Andrew Kaufman

"Your soul is a living, breathing, organic thing. No different than your heart or your legs. And just like your heart keeps your blood oxygenated and your legs keep you moving around, your soul gives you the ability to do amazing, beautiful things." (The Tiny Wife, Andrew Kaufman)

The Tiny Wife by Andrew Kaufman (Kindle Edition)
The Tiny Wife by Andrew Kaufman is a relatively short novella telling a modern fable. The story starts when a robber walks into a bank asking for the most sentimental objects the people in the bank have on them. He tells them that with the object he takes 51 percent of their souls with him and if they don’t figure out how to grow them back, they will die. Thereafter, the characters have some rather bizarre things happen to them. For example, Stacey, the main character, started shrinking in the days that followed the robbery. Another woman found God underneath her couch and put him in the washing machine because he looked filthy.

Although what was happening to the characters was very odd, they did seem to challenge them. They had to either face their fears or, like Stacey, work on the relationships they had with their loved ones. Not everyone succeeded and therefore they died. But, those who did succeed, ended up changing for the better.

What would you do?

This book made me think. A lot. What would I give? Do I carry objects with me that might, even though I believe they help me, are holding me back? Do I have things that hold me from facing facts and dealing with stuff I have to deal with?

Yes, I do. I always, and I mean ALWAYS carry my iPod and a book with me. Those things might seem a little materialistic, but they keep me safe. They shut the big bad world around me up for a while and allow me to be in my own safe and cosy world where there is always coffee and hot chocolate. And even if I don’t want to be alone with my own thoughts, they tend to be able to shut me up too.

So, would I be better off leaving my IPod our books at home sometimes? Do I overprotect myself sometimes? Or is shutting the world out every once in a while just as important as taking it all in?