Love and Shame and Love chronicles four generations of the Chicago-based Popper family as they struggle to come to terms with the choices they've made and the repercussions that followed.
Peter Orner is a wonderful American writer whose books, Esther Stories and The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo, blew me away with the quality and realistic styling of a true storyteller; so when I got the chance to read his newest title, Love and Shame and Love, I had to jump on it. As soon as I started reading, I noticed that each section was narrated by a different character, (some in distant decades), and ranged in length between one and twelve pages; an interesting set-up, reminiscent of Faulkner's stream of consciousness in The Sound in the Fury. I liked this set-up and the way each character had their own distinct personality, even though I did get confused a couple of times and had to reread a section or two. The constant point of view and character changes only added to the illusion that the Popper family really existed, and the way that Peter Orner filled each section with descriptive poeticisms kept me inside the Poppers' world. I also appreciated the humor throughout, and how each character was linked in some way besides just being related. The illustrations added an extra layer to this already amazing novel and I was surprised to find out that Peter Orner's brother Eric Orner was the artist behind them. Overall, I enjoyed the choppy flow of this book, just like in real life, time isn't just a straight line but a series of overlapping events that make up a life and a story. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to read a story with characters that they'll remember for years to come, and a message that rings true for everyone.
Rating: On the Run (4.5/5)
*** I received this book from the author (Book Blogs) in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.