2023 Reading Challenge

2023 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 5 books toward her goal of 265 books.

Book Review: Reincarnation Blues by Michael Poore

“Why don’t you leave her?” asked Milo.
Floyd digested this question for five full minutes.
“I’m trying to be mature about things,” he said at last. “I thought maybe we just needed time. Marriage is work.

“The problem with a barracuda,” said Milo, “isn’t that you aren’t being mature. The problem is that it’s a barracuda. If you don’t like being in the boat with it, one of you has to go.”

I really wanted to like this one… With clever, pithy lines about life and love like the one above (to illustrate the point, Milo actually pulls a barracuda into the boat, where it thrashes at Floyd’s feet – one of the BEST illustrated life lessons EVER in fiction!), how could I not be intrigued?? I was a little apprehensive, because Douglas Adams and Christopher Moore are hit-and-miss authors for me, and there were more than a few comparisons between those authors and Poore, but I was optimistic because of the subject matter. I’m fascinated by the concept of reincarnation and love when Death is a character – there are so many wonderful possibilities to explore in the complex relationship between man and Death… I was semi-turned off from the get-go though – the book opens with reference to death by shark, and I have a ridiculous life-long phobia about sharks, so I was battling the eight ball from the opening line. Unfortunately, things never really picked up for me after that…

I still really like the concept, and am still somewhat curious to see where Suzie and Milo wound up – which is unusual for a book I’ve given up on. I was curious enough, in fact, that I sought out other reviews to see if it was worth sticking with this one. After reading what others thought, I suppose it’s possible that if I’d kept slogging through I would have made it past the jumble of time-lines and perspectives that I found so unnecessarily scattered and distracting and gotten into the story, but I was getting too frustrated to stick with it and after putting it down multiple times I finally decided it simply wasn’t for me. No one spoiled the ending, although a number of readers commented that the end surprised them. Those comments moved the book from a solid position on my “gave up on” pile and into my “come back to it later” one – although there are a slew of Adams and Moore works in line ahead of it and those have been there for some time…

“Death was a door. You went through it over and over, but it still terrified people.”

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