heroes & monsters

Sometimes, I read a book and immediately know I'll never read it again. Other times, when I get to the last page, I feel I've met a friend and know I will stumble across its words numerous times in the future. Perhaps it's the strange style of prose that seems to reach up and grab the reader, perhaps it's the way Riebock tells a story, perhaps it's the all-together humannness of Jack {you'll meet him in the book} that reminds me of a mixture of Steinbeck and what Charles in East of Eden would write if he ever were to get in touch with his emotions and write a book.  From the minute I began reading Josh Riebock's Heroes and Monsters, I knew it would be a go-to book in my library. Once I finished it, I immediately wanted to go back and read it again. It's just that good.

From the scene in the cornfield where he meets Jack, to the restoration of some of his relationships, to quitting his day job in order to write, {um. hello.} this story never reveals itself as untouchable. In fact, there were many times some of the scenes were so closely knit to my own experiences and heart I found myself taking a deep breath of relief - you know the one - the oh good. Someone put into words what I feel type of relief.

Since I bought it on kindle not knowing what to expect, I'm kicking myself for not getting the flesh and bones copy. i'll probably buy it anyway.

I don't want to give away any more of the story, because it's all too powerful on its own, but please...get this book. It's gritty, it's redemptive, it's funny...

...and the scenes of Jack and Riebock just about do me in emotionally.

From the book description :: Every one of us is both a hero and a monster, and the world we inhabit is both beautiful and twisted. We are shaken by changes, losses, gains, insights, desires, mistakes, and transitions. And just when we've gotten settled back down, things get shaken up again. This is the life we've been given. So how do we make sense of life's unexpected nature, find a way to embrace the tension, and live with a sense of peace despite pain?

And one of my favorite quotes :: Since I can remember, I've always had a bit of a crush on words, admired them, envied them, the way they can come together as the ultimate team, the ultimate organization, elastic in every way, capable of so much, capable of anything. Words can walk through walls. They can make things disappear. They can raise the dead. Words are giants, able to lift people up, carry them to the stars, and tear planets apart, grinding even the strongest person into dust. These are things I've known for a long time. I come from a family of storytellers, so it's a part of me, my bones made of paper, ink rushing through my veins. Words, stories, imagination--they've sustained me. They sustain all of us. 


Just in case you're wondering, this review is not in exchange for anything. I don't write about books often unless I've received an advanced copy, but this book moved me so much I needed to let you know so hopefully you would take a chance and read it as well. What book have you read lately that has stopped you in your tracks and made you wanna tell everyone about it? Let me know...

Posted on May 23, 2012 and filed under books.