Everybody's Story on a Page: A review of Half A Life by Darin Strauss
|Half A Life|
by Darin Strauss
Darin Strauss, the author of three novels, one of which, his critically acclaimed debut Chang and Eng, explores the duality of psyche merged into one life, steers into dangerously real yet ultimately freeing literary territory with this fourth book. Half A Life details the events of Darin's life post accident with a veracity seldom on display in memoir. He is sincere almost to the point of insincerity; a vigilant serpent circling, nearly devouring its own tail. But even as he doubts his own motives, we believe him. At the accident scene two curious girls approach him wanting to know if he was the unlucky driver. He reels, squeezes his temples in a show of anguish, turns away as if mere words were beyond him now; a perpetrator as victim. For the rest of his life he wrestles with the awful self hatred which thoughts of such absolution evokes: survivor's guilt.
The Ghost Inside
"But," as one of Darin's short-lived girlfriends chides after he escapes with her in tow from a showing of I Know What You Did last Summer, "what about Celine?" "How often do you think of her?" Aha, we arrive at the crux of the psychic enigma. Just what is the right amount of time to devote to, in Darin's case, the memory of the girl you killed? Once a day? Once a week? But more importantly, after you've let in the ghosts, how do you ever heal?
Starting to Heal
|The author Darin Strauss|
Other Books by Darin Strauss:
Chang and Eng
More Than It Hurts You: A Novel
The Real McCoy
This review was made possible by the Amazon Vine™Voice program and Random House Trade Paperbacks