God-Shaped Hole

Kunvuth MonyKanchna / Khmer Times No Comments Share:

When she was twelve, Beatrice was told by a fortune teller that her one true love would die young and leave her all alone.

How would you feel or react when out of nowhere, a stranger approaches and points out a remark about a terrible and unfortunate future they thought you would likely come upon? Would you take their words seriously and be overly anxious to be involved in a serious loving relationship in fear of having your heart broken by a “true love” that would die and leave you all alone? Or would you rather dismiss it because predicting someone’s future is just impossible and ridiculous?

One day, Beatrice comes upon a personal advertisement in a section called MEN SEEKING WOMEN in the LA Weekly that says, “If your intentions are pure, I’m seeking a friend for the end of the world.” The ad comes with a phone number, which Beatrice calls. She ends up going on a date with the person behind the advertisement, Jacob Grace.

. .

The duo hit it off pretty quickly on their first date and they soon find themselves in love with each other. They fill their days with love and joy. But like any other mature relationships, theirs meet some setbacks, too. Beatrice and Jacob are both pained characters struggling to survive their personal battles.

They both have suffered emotionally from being neglected by their fathers, which turns out to have a major effect on their lives, individually and as a couple.

The love story seems simple enough with two people falling in love, having their love for one another tested by the obstacles they encounter as their story progresses.

But the story’s author, Tiffanie DeBartolo, leads us to a journey of romantic storytelling filled with ironic combination of wit and sadness. And man, her words are heart-wrenching. As you turn the pages of God-Shaped Hole, you will find yourself feeling the pain of the characters especially if you have been emotionally wounded yourself in real life.

When I first opened this book and read the first few pages, I was very eager to know how it ends and find out whether Jacob is Beatrice’s true love who would die and leave her alone.

. .

But as the story unfolded, I was no longer hoping for its end. I was too attached to their characters that their emotions sometimes overwhelmed me. The way DeBartolo stitched her words and phrases to represent the pain and joy of Beatrice and Jacob makes you think of your own happiness and agony. It is through this book that I realised “Don’t judge a book by its cover” is really true. This book isn’t your typical love story. It will make you cry and will give you butterflies on your stomachs. God-Shaped Hole is just full of surprises and emotions that would make you hesitate to put the book down even for a minute.

If reading beautifully written stories makes you happy, then let DeBartolo’s masterpiece be your happy pill.

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