Friday, February 10, 2012

Drop Out and return

      Sometimes we read books for the excitement and action, sometimes for the plot and twists, and sometimes for the characters and their connection with us. Once in a while we read for the emotion connection, for the humanity of the story, for a peek into the lives of others. Often those books have no strong plot or incredible twists or car chases with huge explosions. Yet the story hits us deeply.

      When a book captures the reader from the first page it is good but when it captures you for the entire length of a story it is excellent. But a book, which pulls the reader in, making the reader think and feel with well written words, poignant scenes, and strong emotional context, is simply extraordinary. Today's book is one of those books. 

Drop Out
By Neil Ostroff
Sold by Amazon Digital Services
Length approximately 104 pages

From the back Cover:
When the Twin Towers fell, Nathan Cruz saved the lives of dozens of strangers but the one life he could not save was that of his pregnant fiancé. Wracked with survivor's guilt and unresolved goodbyes, Nathan drops out of society where he lives self-sufficiently on a houseboat in Florida.

A twist of fate lands him into the home of Miriam Kanter, a young, fiercely independent woman with a shocking secret. Alone together in the midst of a raging hurricane, Nathan discloses the nearly unbearable sorrows of his past and finds strength to piece his shattered life back together. Being with Miriam, he feels the connection he'd been missing, stirring up feelings buried long ago. But will Miriam's own life cut short and plunge Nathan back into his world of reclusive isolation?

About the Book:
        An elevator ride cut short by the crash of an airplane into one of the twin towers is the opening of this book. We follow Nathan Cruz as he tries to rescue people while trying to reach his wife who is several floors above him. He has contact with her by cell phone but the fire is keeping her where she is and a blocked stairwell is preventing him from going to her. Neil saves dozens of people and eventually is seen as a hero by everyone else but himself.  He has failed.
      Ten years later we find Nathan has dropped out of life and is living on a small boat in the Florida Keys, keeping himself in food with fishing and the gathering of eggs from his pet chicken. A hurricane is quickly approaching the Keys but Nathan is determined to ride out the storm, though even the most seasoned of residents are telling him to evacuate. The storm is so powerful that Nathan loses his small craft but manages to make it to shore. There he spots a lone figure, struggling against the storm. Intrigued that someone is still around, he follows the figure who, as it turns out, is Miriam Kanter, a fellow individualist who was determined not to leave. She invites him into her shelter and it is there that Nathan's life changes drastically.

My Take:
      Some books just stay with you. Some scenes continue to stir up emotions and ride with you like a backseat driver, popping up now and again to remind you of something or in this case remind you of a feeling. In Heir to Power (Michele Poague), it was the scene when Kinter holds one of their band as he dies; in Eragon it was the tomb transformed into crystal. But with some books, there are so many pieces that hang in there. I believe for many of us this will be one of those books.
      When I started to write this review, I kept trying to figure out just how to tell you what the book was like.  I struggled with this for days. To me it is important that you, as my reader, don't get mislead about the nature of a book. Meanwhile, as I struggled, one book kept knocking on the door of my emotions - The Old Man and the Sea. They say there are only three  basic plots - man against other men; man against nature; and man against himself. Like The Old Man and the Sea, Drop Out is about man's battle with himself, told in crisp scenes and realistic dialog that keeps the pages flowing smoothly. 
      I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone, but especially those readers who enjoy an in depth study of man's battle against his own nature. If you are looking for quick reads with huge climaxes and twists and turns, this may not be the book for you but if you are looking for something that will touch you deeply and stay with you long past the final page, this is the book. 
     There is some sex that is somewhat graphic (and my readers know I don't like sex for the sake of sex) but it is dearly important to the story.

No comments:

Post a Comment

We'd love to hear from you! Tell us what you're reading, what you want us to review, how we're doing, or just comment on the blog!