(As promised yesterday, here’s the review of Before Ever After, first published in Manila Bulletin, Students and Campuses section)
Not all fairy tales have a happy ending — this is what Shelley Gallus discovers in “Before Ever After,” the debut novel of Filipino author Samantha Sotto.
After her idyllic marriage is cut short by the untimely death of her husband in a terrorist bombing, Shelley has a difficult time moving on, overcome by grief and memories of their life together. One fateful day, her doorbell rings, and she finds the story isn’t over just yet – standing on her doorstep is a man who looks exactly like her husband.
The stranger introduces himself as Paolo, claims her husband Max is his grandfather, and that Max is halfway across the world, alive and apparently well, and Paolo has pictures to prove it. Bewildered, and yet desperate for the truth, Shelley agrees to accompany Paolo to find the husband she believed dead. Along the way they exchange memories of the man they thought they knew, and Max’s identity is gradually revealed.
Continue reading “Detour from Ever After”
I like good, strong voices in fiction. I like characters that ring true, make a distinct impression, and keep me engaged in the story.
In the past week, I read The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides and The Lacemaker and the Princess by Kimberley Brubaker Bradley. These two novels each offered a unique point of view: one from the outside looking in, and the other from inside looking out.
Continue reading “Hearing Voices”
A few months back, I signed up for the War Across the Generations World War II Reading Challenge, because I’d read a lot of Holocaust-themed books this year, and had a bunch more waiting in mye in months, and after the flood TBR.
I realized I haven’t read anything for the challenge, and after the flood left my TBR (arranged in order of priority) in wild disarray, I spotted Sarah’s Key (#151 for 2009) in one of the stacks I was reshelving and I was reminded that I had two more books to read this year, so I decided to make some headway in completing the challenge.
Continue reading “Sarah’s Key”