When Sirens Call
I have just finished Paul David Adkin's novel When Sirens Call and I want to shout to anyone out there "Read This Novel!" I do not want to do a review that tells the story, I think the novel does that really well and I may ruin another reader's journey into this wonderful landscape, but (yes a small but) it is set on a Greek island and it does refer to the Sirens so I'd like to "lift" that central image and bring it into this review.
A novel should act like the Sirens to the reader. Like Odysseus, we strap ourselves to the mast and let the author, through the novel, through its words, images, rhythms, plot lines, and other devices, sing to us, and thus allow the author to carry us to places we have not imagined, or that we have but have avoided looking at too closely for it may disturb the shallows where we live our lives by reminding us of those monsters that dwell in a Jungian Deep.
This book is full of monsters. Not the physical kind but the ones that always hold me, the intellectual kind. It is a book of ideas, of philosophies and of characters. People who leap out at you, people you've met or would have liked to. Fictional and real people — the paradox of good writing.
This book has been filling my head space for a week or so now as I worked my way through its gently unfolding chapters, my reading accelerating just as the novel, like all good novels, did, bringing me deeper and deeper into the world of this novel, into the minds of the two main characters and into the ideas that Paul Adkin explores.
I will let the novel dwell now for a few days, let his words sink, his images sink, let it all sink deep into that place inside where all the books we read (those that touch us at least) go.
As I said at the start, I cannot recommend this book highly enough, but I do recommend it, highly.
In the world of online ratings — five stars out of five.