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Dream Junkies Paperback – June 10, 2011
I really loved this book. Everyone who lives in this country, immigrant and native born, can appreciate the struggle of wanting to find your niche here. This book is part friendship story and part self-soul searching story, has a little of everything. It has funny parts. It has sad parts. It has parts that will make you think.
A BOOKISH AFFAIR
A novel above its literary gender...Kitty, the main character, is well-versed in theater, knows something about politics, and makes an interesting parallel between the communism totalitarism in USSR and the capitalist one in US...A cool American adventure like ride the storm for go-west postmodern amazons.
In this analytical slice-of-life illustrating how romantic struggles know no borders... The alternately glamorous and gritty glimpses of L.A. and the consistently strong, realistic dialogue give the well-paced novel a cinematic feel.
KIRKUS INDIE REVIEW
From the Author
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A charming first novel that slaps a contemporary perspective of modern love and American Dream, accessible enough to be read in one weekend. The story passes everything through the lens of romanticism and irony. It weaves the stories of two free spirited artistic women (Kitty and Desert Rose) who fly from NY to LA with the desire to change their lives. The wistful glimmer of prose shines in the parts about Kitty, while Desert Rose's thread is a tragic comic portrayal of women great otherwise who fall prey to fantasy relationships. Although the book doesn't quite pursue the provocative ideas sprinkled in its pages, it manages to be touching, interesting and its bitter sweet fashion, a lot of fun.
As another reviewer mentioned - the inappropriate use of "-" caused a reading continuity nightmare. I usually don't mind minor editing mistakes if I am enjoying a book - but it was irritating. I would take a pass.
But her dream has become a distant ghost. She has ended up in the rut of 'real' life, which seems to have left a bitter taste. She decides to leave it all and return to the place she knows best... Romania.
But before leaving she decides to have one final road trip, a impulsive fling into the vast American expanse and see what life has to offer before giving it all up. Her "Goodbye America Trip". And so the story begins, and it does so with a great opening line:
"Most times when I'm out on a date, I feel like an actress on stage giving a great performance in a second-rate theatre."
There are many human encounters on this trip that Kitty undertakes with both sad and comical consequences. The author manages to bring to light quite a few home truths about relationships during the journey by asking some big life focused questions.
This exposes the fact that many people are in love with the 'dream' and not 'reality'. The 'idea' of something can be extremely powerful.
She even manages to discuss politics without losing the reader in the process. No easy feat.
The author introduces weight and gravitas to this naturally meandering story by way of some lovely philosophical moments coupled with beautiful metaphors and analogies. Here is just one such moment that I enjoyed:
"The car left and started the one way ride into black empty space. They were like two different planets, a big blue one and a tiny golden one, from two solar systems, that came close to each other for the first time in a thousand years or so. Now, each planet was going back to its own orbit. Following a course that was going to take them farther and farther away from each other. "
And here are some thoughts on life and love:
"Any person has been both, a junky and the drug, at one point or another in their life."
I couldn't agree more.
Just one more:
"The betrayal of your soul is death."
Excellent, and to the point.
Along the length of the story there are also references to literary greats - that might go unnoticed to some - such as the bard himself, Shakespeare. Personally, I would like more of this and the interesting philosophical slant the author applies to her writing, because she does this so well. However, I do understand that her literature is geared towards a specific kind of genre and reader.
In this novel the reader could have easily encountered scenes of a sexual nature, but the author cleverly avoided the unnecessary, simply by alluding to the obvious. I am glad of this. A good move; there is nothing worse than cheap titillation getting in the way, unless it is actually necessary to move the story forward.
There is a fantastical aspect to the story, which in the case of this novel is for the purpose of escapism and it does exactly that. I am no expert on this type of genre, but I am glad that the effect is achieved with a little spiritual backing and some peppering of cerebral profundity.
What is the crux of this story?
For me, it is that we all want and need the same thing - to be Happy. And happiness is not wealth or material things. So what is happiness?
Happiness = Love.
What have I learned about Love?
I have learned that you must leave the past behind and take a chance in the moment. Be in the present. Allow randomness to work its magic. Be swept away.
It is better to experience love for a moment than not at all.
These are things we all know or are aware of, but it is good to be reminded.
Though Love comes in many guises and seems so difficult to attain, remember that it is also one of the most common happenings on our planet - always just around the corner.
Love is like the stars in the night sky- when one is born another one dies.
Which begs the question: Why is it so difficult to find Love? Is it our fault when we fail to find it? Do we try too hard? And do we possess the wrong motivation?
At one point in the novel the author said: "Working to live and not living to work."
It made me think. I realized that many people do the latter throughout their lives. This is such a waste of life, especially if you have a choice to do otherwise. This is not something I have ever done, but I find it sad that other people do.
This book is written well, which made it a breeze to read. For this reason I believe the work deserves four stars.
So, if you want to read a book about gambling everything you know and trust for Love, then this is the book.
Sergiu Pobereznic (author)
I really enjoyed this book. I think everyone who lives in this country, immigrant and native born, can appreciate the struggle of wanting to find your niche here in this country. We're told that if we go after what we want, we can have it. This is supposed to be the land of opportunity where if you have a desire, you have the freedom to go after it. It sounds simple enough,no? Unfortunately as Kitty and Desert Rose find out, it's not that easy to get, let alone figure out what exactly the American Dream is to each of us. It's more trial and error than we think it is. You really feel for their situation and they are definitely two characters that I found myself rooting for throughout the book. This book is part friendship story and part self soul searching story.
This book has a little of everything. It has funny parts. It has sad parts. It has parts that will make you think. It's hard to quantify the overall feeling of the book. As you may have counted, this will be the third book that I've reviewed by Alexandra Ares and one thing that is consistent among all three of the books is that they have great dialogue. It's really realistic and well written. The writing itself is good but it's the dialogue that really keeps the books going along. That is true for all of the books, especially for Dream Junkies.
Bottom line: This is a fun ride that looks at some big questions.