The famous “coming of age” story; you could say that it’s been done to death, but with each generation of authors there is always something fresh and new to the genre: the era, the locale, the gender of the protagonist or protagonists, as the case may be.
I was first caught by the cover of Another Life, simple with just enough pop. Don’t discount covers, if it blends in with all of the others, I might not notice it. Haller’s synopsis was intriguing. I thought that this might be just the change of pace that I was looking for.
Haller painted the picture of one summer in a small town in upstate New York. He allowed me to peek into the lives of some of the residents and he weaved an intricate web of connections and disconnections. I really felt like I got to know his characters.
For whatever reason, I was unable to immerse myself into Another Life. It’s hard to put my finger on why. The writing was good but didn’t captivate me; the characters were interesting but didn’t become new friends; the plot was well paced but I didn’t feel the intangible pull to get back to the book.
Unfortunately, Another Life didn’t make me feel. When I reached the end, I felt that some of the storylines were unfinished, but then again, perhaps that was the point, real life is never really finished.
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By Robert Haller