Before my review I wanted to share a word of clarification. I have a personal connection with the book I’m reviewing today. I have translated it to English. I have no commercial stake in the sale of the book (I’ve provided the translation but don’t share in the sales) but wanted you to know that my review (that I’m not posting in official sites as I appear in the credits) is a translation of my review of the Spanish version of the book as I wouldn’t dare comment on my own work. I try to be as unobtrusive as I can when translating as I want the final result to be as close as possible to the original. So any faults you might find with the book will probably be mine and the merits are Paloma’s.
And without further ado…
A journey to happiness (Passage to Thailand)
- File Size:948 KB
- Print Length:184 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage:Unlimited
- Sold by:Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
A journey to the depths of consciousness
The title of this novel describes it perfectly. Initially the story is presented from the pont of view of Sara, a young woman who decides to start taking classes at a martial arts school, although what she is trying to do is to find herself. Marc, one of the teachers of the school feels a special affinity for Sara from the very beginning and knows that she needs somebody to help her.
But, although the story returns to Sara, the main part of the novel follows Marc, who discovers many family secrets he wasn’t aware of, including a young half-sister, Carlota, who accompanies him in his journey to Thailand.
His journey to a temple in Chiang Mai, is also ours. Through the narration of several of the characters, including the abbot of the temple, and later a young novice, we learn the story of the Buddha and some of his ideas. The reflections and reactions of the characters, especially those of Carlota, help us question and explore Buddhist philosophy, and at the same time provide us with a human and emotional centre. Carlota is a girl confronted by a situation that would be terrible and cruel at any age who grows and discovers that you make your own happiness.
Marc goes from being an intuitive and “good” man to a man who reaches enlightenment and becomes a master of more than just martial arts, and the father of a unique family.
And to complete the transformation, Sara also goes in search of her own happiness and I found her adventure truly inspiring.
This is not a novel full of action and drama, but a reflective novel where ideas and philosophy are at a premium. The psychological portraits of the characters help us live the story and experiment in the first person their discoveries and revelations.
If you’re only looking for action, romance and standard adventures, I don’t recommend you this novel. But if you dare to go embark on a journey exploring ideas and confronting prejudices, I recommend you this book by Paloma Caral, an author whom you should follow closely. She’ll open up the doors of your mind and your spirit.
The Spanish version of the book has been on the best-sellers list for over a year now.
Realistic Characterization: 4/5
Made Me Think: 5/5
Overall enjoyment: 4.5/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
Buy it at: Amazon
Format & Pricing:
Olga Núñez Miret