"I have been sleuthing my mother's symptoms for as long as I can remember. If I see myself as an unwilling detective with a desire for justice, is her illness an unsolved crime? If so, who is the villain and who is the victim?"
Sofia, a young anthropologist, has spent much of her life trying to solve the mystery of her mother's unexplainable illness. She is frustrated with Rose and her constant complaints, but utterly relieved to be called to abandon her own disappointing fledgling adult life.
She and her mother travel to the searing, arid coast of southern Spain to see a famous consultant - their very last chance - in the hope that he might cure her unpredictable limb paralysis. But Dr. Gomez has strange methods that seem to have little to do with physical medicine, and as the treatment progresses, Sofia's mother's illness becomes increasingly baffling. Sofia's role as detective - tracking her mother's symptoms in an attempt to find the secret motivation for her pain - deepens as she discovers her own desires in this transient desert community.
©2016 Deborah Levy (P)2016 Dreamscape Media, LLC
This book waxes poetic in a way that is lyrical, but sometimes a little too obtuse. If you can stick with it, you'll find adequate reconciliation of the main characters. The pace however, is maddeningly slow in some parts as well as the protagonist's transformation. I found myself wanting to push her through her mental malady much faster than Gomez. You'll love this though, if you're into languid scenes that leave no detail undescribed or underdescribed, and if hyper self-awareness interests you.
The story line was creative with a mysterious disease, the travel through Spain and Greece made it somewhat exotic, and the main character had a lot of self exploration to do throughout the novel professionally, spiritually and sexually. All of that should make for an exciting listen....But the plot moved slowly and the preoccupation with the mother's illness and her ungrateful poor manners were annoying and irritating for long periods of time detracting from the great parts of the story
This story is set in Spain. Snippets of the language pepper the text. They could at least hire a reader with some sort of grasp on the language.
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