Thursday, March 17, 2011

Book Review: Skipping a Beat

Speaking of timing, here's a book that explores what happens when someone suddenly wakes up to the truth of how fleeting this life's journey is. As we empathize with the Japanese people in the aftermath of catastrophe, we certainly have a higher sense of the brevity of life, the preciousness of time with loved ones, and the question of what really matters in this life.

Sarah Pekkanen explores some of these questions in her latest novel, Skipping a Beat. I eagerly began reading the book and was hooked right from the beginning. The story centers in a prosperous thirty-smething aged couple who has it all--after having had little as children-- and what happens when the main character, Julia Dunhill, finds that after a cardiac arrest, her husband, Michael has come back to life, but not exactly in the same frame of mind as before.

This is a beautiful story. I probably related more to Michael than to Julia at times, throughout the story, but there was ample backstory and exploration of character nuances to get anybody tied in to the unfolding of the story and the ultimate outcome. Some reviewers have discussed the ending as surprising, but I wasn't surprised by the resolution of the story. The only thing I couldn't relate to at all had to do with what you call the theology of Michael's experience and his viewpoint of the afterlife.

But this novel certainly explores some of the more impacting experiences of life. It's no picnic in a fairytale world, but a thoughtful look at a marriage in trouble, a man with a new outlook on life, and a woman who has never forgotten her past. Sarah Pekkanen's SKIPPING A BEAT is aptly named. More than that, it's a moving story; a treasure chest of reality and hope.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I receive books free from publishers. I am not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

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