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Showing 1-10 of 76 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 130 reviews
on February 8, 2015
Here is an astounding book from Uvi Poznansky with her work of literary fiction, Apart from Love. Ms. Poznansky is a multi-talented author and artist, and with this novel, she creates a multi-faceted and multi-layered work of art.

The story is told through the first person narrations of Anita, the new wife of Lenny and step-mother to the other narrator, Ben. The point of view is unique because the story is more about the love between Ben's parents, Lenny and Natasha, than the other two, who form another sort of love story. Ben's separation from his home for ten years only shows the level of dysfunction in this family. I use the word "dysfunction" with disdain sometimes because it is overused to the point where it sometimes means very little. But if any family is dysfunctional, it is this one.
During Ben's absence, the lack of communication with his mother and father is evident when he comes home. For a decade, he assumed his talented pianist mother is out on tour, when in fact, his father is hiding something quite important from his son about Natasha.

In the meantime, Lenny has remarried Anita who is one year younger than Ben. She's a beauty--a younger version of Natasha. It's complicated and completely dysfunctional in the true meaning of that word.

Literary techniques abound in Apart from Love. The author skillfully creates symbols and metaphors with the white piano in the living room, the antique mirror in the bedroom, and the tape recorder on the balcony. The point of view represents the author's skill in writing dialogue that characterizes both Ben and Anita. It's obvious when switching between chapters who is the narrator, even though Ms. Poznansky tells the reader if it's Ben or Anita in each chapter title. That's helpful, but with her paintbrush, she paints prose that is distinct for each one.

Alzheimers rears its horrifying head in parts of the story, as does the family's inability to know how to deal with it. Insanity hovers at the edges of all the characters as well, presenting the reader with that fine line between genius and the alternative.

If that's not enough, Lenny is a writer who uses the words of others to create his stories. The blurred lines between reality and fiction are explored in this intimate look at how authors sometimes steal identities from others to draw portraits of real life. It's haunting in its honesty of how an author works. The "record, rewind, record" element of the story reminds me that all reality is really the fiction of our imaginations.

Uvi Poznansky is a talented author who says in her bio, "I paint with my pen, and write with my paintbrush." The cover of Apart from Love and the content in between are assurances that this is true.
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on July 13, 2014
"Say anything, apart from love." That's the mantra of this book, the heart of it. I'm not commonly a romance reader, but I am a literary reader, and Uvi Poznansky's deft prose and fresh eye showed me corners of the human soul that few novels convey.

A passionate tale told by two people: Ben, a twenty-seven year old student, and Anita, spunky, uneducated, the new wife of , Ben's aging father.

The two, Ben and Anita, feel a dangerous attraction to one another, and the story is off... taking you with it, into secret realms of desire.

Other secrets are soon revealed, about Lenny, Ben's father, and Ben's mother, stricken with early-onset Alzheimer's.

And there is a tape recorder... I won't tell you the part it plays in this journey from grief and guilt to forgiveness and love.

Uvi Poznansky is a thoughtful, talented writer. Her work brims with nuance. This is not a frivolous book, but it is a romance with real life, and a fine one.
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Adult children of divorce, estrangement, and guilt. This story of a dysfunctional family will resound in every heart.

Ben, aged 28, returns home after many years, still bitter about the divorce of his parents, Lenny and Natasha. He meets Lenny's new young bride, Anita, and is troubled to find himself attracted to her. His dismay deepens when he learns that his mother Natasha, once a brilliant pianist who he'd thought was on a world concert tour, is instead in a nursing home suffering from Alzheimers.

The story is told alternately through two points of view, Ben's and Anita's. Though uneducated, Anita is a diamond in the rough character who's had a tough life. She's likeable, and feels alone because Lenny, a writer, is self-centered and distant. Lenny has encouraged Ben and Anita to record their thoughts on a tape recorder, which is how we hear their two points of view. Too late, the pair discover that Lenny is listening to their tapes and putting them into his own writing - likely fabricating his own novel from the thoughts of his unhappy son and equally unhappy new wife. How to deal with this heartbreaking, tangled web?

This eloquently written tale provides a look into the long-term emotional scars a broken home leaves on everyone involved. The author's skill shows in her depiction of the three alternating voices of Lenny, Ben and Anita. They are all very different voices, yet each conveys the complex love that both binds them and tears them apart. Highly recommended!
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Uvi Poznansky, the author of that brilliant book brings in so much understanding into Ben, as he finally comes back from years of absence from his home and family, only to find out that his father Lenny just married Anita and has a secret and the failing health of his mother, Natasha - early Alzheimer's.
A real Saga, masterfully and captivating written, about Lenny, Anita, his second wife and his first wife Natasha and Ben.

Ben, not really believing what is happening, is always looking back to his childhood, clinging at it, looking for his mother. He always thought that she went to an convention, since she was a brilliant pianist, only to find out, she went into a home. His father never had told him. Finally believing it he visits her in the home. What tenderness to make her aware of himself. But she is only looking out the window. And devastated he ran away again only just to come back at the failing health of his father.

It would take pages and pages to tell you all, all the struggles Anita and Ben has, together have, and her loneliness, and the longing of Anita to her mother.

Lenny tries to put all what is happening into a book and his last words where: "There must be some significance to all this. And it must be put in words or else, my son would open the door and I would not be ready for him."

I really enjoyed the book. Well done Uvi Poznansky
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on May 9, 2015
Using a lovely, lyrical prose, Uvi Poznansky gently guides the reader into the deep cavern of a dysfunctional family playing out their own form of a Shakespearean tragedy. The protagonists are four-fold: an emotionally detached father and in his wake, his emotionally bereft son; an ex-wife experiencing a serious illness, and a very young second wife, mopping up the messy pieces while struggling with her own past.

Not an easy scenario, yet Poznansky, along with beautiful descriptions, manages to portray each character with great depth and authenticity. Personally, my favorite leading figure was the second wife, Anita, who grew up with so little, yet in the midst of this highly educated and intimidating family, slowly displays her innate intelligence and ends up outshining them all. If you’re looking for a book that will make you think and offers you an in-depth study into human behavior, this is for you! Highly recommended.
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on November 2, 2014
Apart From Love is a fascinating insight into the human condition and all the tortured webs we, who are all too human, weave.

Ms Poznansky populates her novel with sharply etched characters. Ben and Anita form a spine for the story, but Ben’s father Lenny hovers behind everything that happens. He is the puppet master I think. The others dance on his strings without always being aware of that fact.

Anita is Lenny’s young wife and Ben’s stepmother. They are strongly attracted to each other and Lenny manipulates the situation for his own ends. One of those ends concerns a novel Lenny is writing, but there seems (to me) to be more than the writing of a novel concerning Lenny. He wants to be in complete control of the situation.

Ms Posnansky brings all the characters to life with a skilful hand. To me this is essentially a novel about life and real people involved in what is a plausible triangle. This is a book that explores a lot of what happens to real people thrust into an unplanned circumstance.

The writer displays great clarity of thought and maturity of spirit. I heartily recommend it to anyone who wants to read an intelligent book.
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on June 17, 2014
"Just say something to me. Anything." And I thought, Any other word apart from Love, 'cause that word is diluted, and no one knows what it really means, anyway. Uvi Poznansky explores the intricate and complex world of love in ‘Apart From Love’. The characters reveal the hidden recesses of their mind as the story unfolds. A delightful narrative that encompasses all the aspects of life: love, loss, suffering, pain and hope. The main characters Ben and Anita are drawn to each other despite the complexities of their life and existence. In a rather unusual way they discover themselves. The journey is filled with heartbreak, sheer devastation and loneliness. However, despite the odds, despite the overwhelming weight of guilt, a light shines at the end of the dark tunnel. What are the odds of Ben and Anita finding a place for each other in their turbulent world? Will they find anything apart from love? Will they find love? Discover the meaning of love hidden in poignant lines, poetically woven to create a canvas of life. Feel the seismic tremors of dark secrets, unbridled passion and a flame that just refuses to quell. A beautiful narrative that highlights Poznansky’s adept handling of plot & language and takes you into the mind of a dysfunctional family grappling with universal issues of love, betrayal and forgiveness. Discover ‘Apart From Love’ and connect with a great artist of our times, an artist that transforms the ordinary into the extraordinary and turns everything that she writes to gold with her Midas like touch.
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on April 28, 2015
Ms. Poznansky always writes intriguing, well written books. Apart from Love is no exception.

Everyone should be able to relate to this storyline since it's about a dysfunctional family. To be honest I wasn't certain I was going to enjoy this book since I need to have a character I like. I didn't like Ben's character very much because I thought at his age he should be over his father leaving his mother for a younger woman. I didn't care for Lenny because he was just too wrapped up in himself. At first I wasn't certain I was going to like Anita either, but she grew on me. I enjoyed her common sense approach to life and how she bore the burden being married to a man who never really committed to her because he's still looking back at his past life with his ex wife.

This novel is like a beautiful woven tapestry - all the threads come together to reveal a what makes up a family.
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on August 27, 2013
A famous poet, translator, and philosopher Samuil Marshak once said that frequent use of highly emotional words robs them of their meaning, making them dull and lackluster, like an old coin losing its shine. And that's exactly what Anita, the young wife of Ben's aging father, says to her husband in the story:

"Just say something to me. Anything." And I thought, Any other word apart from Love, `cause that word is diluted, and no one knows what it really means, anyway.

Coming from uneducated Anita, who is a far cry from being a poet or a philosopher, this thought acquires an even more poignant and raw meaning. She is not trying to impress anyone, she is speaking her heart and her mind, trying to cope with the turmoil of her aging husband's fast decline and her growing attraction for his adult son Ben.

Emotions run high in this story by Uvi Poznansky, made even more prominent by her use of alternating points of view throughout different chapters. All the main characters get a voice and an opportunity to share their thoughts, desires, internal struggles, and guilt, just like Ben eloquently expresses in this passage as he is falling for Anita:

"...I should have been more careful...I am surrounded - and at the same time, isolated. I am alone. I am apart from Love."

A beautifully-written and deeply philosophical book. Highly recommended.
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on September 6, 2012
Apart From Love
By Uvi Poznansky

Reviewed by R. Murry

The family dynamic has been written about since the beginning of time: the Biblical story of Joseph, Macbeth, and in the 1930s, William Faulkner's The Sound and The Fury. Like Faulkner, Ms. Poznansky uses more than one person to tell the story of "Apart From Love." Faulkner used four. Ms. Poznansky uses two: Ben and Anita. Their voices are orchestrated close to perfection in a loving way.

Each chapter is told by one or the other, explaining their understanding of the events which leads to conflict within the family circle: Ben's father and Anita's twice her age husband, Lenny; Lenny's first wife and Ben's mother, Natasha; Anita's mom; and three aunts round out the family Kaminsky.

Interwoven into the main character's discourses are the normal family emotions: greed, sex, hatred, control, loneliness, procreation, legacy, and everything you may think of "Apart From Love." No one ever uses the love word as in the phrase "I love you."

Anita and Ben are young and are thinking about each other. Lenny is old and is thinking about Natasha and what could have been had she not gone into a vegetable state. Lenny is recording his fictional novel as to what he believes is happening between his son and second wife. The novel turns out to be his memoir.

There are family mishaps, joyous times, secrets, and torments. Each narrator full fills their duty by translating their opinion of the events based on their background: Ben, a worldly educated one and Anita with her street smarts' schooling. They each speak a different language, although are of the same generation. The reader will enjoy their terminologies.

Ms. Poznansky pulls off a well written story of dependency. Every one of the characters are dependent on one another and are looking for support right up to the end of this skillfully developed novel. A very good read if you're looking for something "Apart From Love."
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