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young adult book reviews & more

Earthly Pleasures by Karen Neches

Earthly Pleasures: A NovelSkye Sebring, a hospitality greeter in Heaven, is perfectly content with her life. She’s got great friends, the best boyfriend—a perfect life. But all that perfection starts to slip away when Skye meets Ryan Blaine, whose near death motorcycle accident propels him into the Heavenly dimension for a few moments. Neither can forget the other, Ryan for the love of his life he believes he’s lose and Skye for some mysterious connection she feels for this stranger. Skye’s ultimate decision comes when she is chosen to go to Earth by the Supreme Being. Things are not what they seem to be, and Skye will have to find the courage to leave behind all she knows to enter the realm of old and new beginnings, risk and hope, and Beatles songs.

Earthly Pleasures is a beautifully and cleverly crafted story. I love the uniqueness of Neches’ vision of Heaven, a synergy or modern technology and spiritual elements; it is a model of perfection without being too religious besides the incorporation of a Supreme Being. Much of Neches’s writing challenges traditional beliefs in a subtle and not too provocative way: the Supreme Being is actually female, everyone goes to Heaven, and souls live many lives on Earth. This provides for an interesting backdrop for Skye’s story, which is complicated but easy to understand and get used to. Neches definitely proves herself to be an incredible and skilled storyteller through her manipulation of events and details from the perspectives of so many different characters. The switching points of views are sometimes confusing, because the reader may wonder what the significance of this obscure character is, but the gradual unraveling of the truth of Skye and Ryan’s relationship makes the story so satisfying to read. My favorite part by far was the love story and the fact that one man refused to give up on the woman he loved, no matter how much time passed and how circumstances change. Earthly Pleasures is such a fantastically put together story and novel that will be completely enjoyable for all readers.

Fans of novels regarding the afterlife involving love stories, such as Kissed by an Angel by Elizabeth Chandler, Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin, and Reincarnation by Suzanne Weyn will probably love Earthly Pleasures as much as I did.

Rating: 4.5

Review copy from BookDivas

2 munch(es) :

ilonga said...

another one to my amazon wish list :)

debbiesworld said...

This sounds great! I just added it my my wish list.

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