Even In Paradise- Chelsey Philpot
When I read Even in Paradise, it was my fourth book of the day. I picked it up thinking it would be a novelty, an easy contemporary which I crave in the summer. Don’t let the cover fool you, this book is not easy. It is the kind of book that leaves you permanently altered, the words sinking under your skin like a tattoo. The “secret” was evident to me from the beginning, but it didn’t matter because I was as fascinated with the Great Buchanan’s as Charlie was—pulled into their wondrous web.
The book is clearly influenced by The Great Gatsby (which is referenced in the book itself); I’d say it’s a parallel story, but more than that it joins in a conversation with Gatsby that I find enchanting. At time the prose rivals Fitzgerald’s, maybe exceeds it in its simple beauty. Each and every character draws you in and charms you into loving them. The twists and turns of the story, every emotion, every separation, every occurrence is as much your own as they are Charlie’s. I could not have put the book down I was so ensorcelled.
No, this book is not easy. It leaves you with questions that burn deep in your gut and with answers that seem to wriggle just out of your grasp. It leaves you uneasy, broken, hopeful, but mostly it leaves you with a desire to live deeply.
It is my second MUST READ of the year and certainly a book that will haunt the edges of my consciousness. I’m glad of that though; we’ll just let it linger there at the edges as it unfolds secrets and subtleties.
Even in Paradise is due out from HarperTeen October 14th. Pre-Order your copy here.
ARC provided gratis by HarperTeen at BEA.