From the author of the bestselling genre-defining Enchanters series, comes a new literary tour de force about Emily, a young woman balancing two worlds between her fingertips: the one that is real to her and the one that is real to everyone else…
The question is: which one will she choose?
Never romanticizing what it means to be a twenty-something schizophrenic in a world broken by normalcy and half-baked fairytales, Allie Burke’s latest novel unites Emily and her world at large, spanning from the streets of Russia, to the sheets of her bed, to the idiosyncratic comfort she gets from worlds that don’t exist at all.
Woven with angst and darkness, bursting with heartache, Paper Souls tells of the irreparably damaged and broken, and how they survive.
I finished Paper Souls a few weeks ago. It’s taken me this long to figure out exactly how to review it. Upon gobbling up the last pages, I felt every single emotion all at once. I wanted to write the review right then and there. But…what do I have to say? Everything and nothing. How do you describe something extraordinary with mere ordinary words?
Some authors tell us a story, others show us. Burke injects it into our veins. We don’t meet Emily Colt, we become her; or, rather, she becomes us. And, again, she doesn’t tell us or show us what it is like to have schizophrenia, she gives it to us. From this intimate transferal, she teaches us the most beautiful of lessons…that we aren’t any different than Emily. And from this realization, that we, all of us, some part of us, is Emily, we fall in love with her, and ourselves, and all the beautifully tragic perplexities that make up each of our tortured psyches. Delicately weaved into the pages is a new appreciation and understanding of humankind, of human nature.
The prose is rigid and raw, sexy and disturbing; a deep crimson river of love and heartache coursing through us. The story line is harsh and soft, simple and complex; a perpetual contradiction. And it works so perfectly, magically. Each word, a gift.
Some books are like fast food. This book isn’t meant to be devoured, although it is so deliciously tempting from the outset. The filet mignon of literature, you’ll want to savor each word, each page, each experience. Let the buttery goodness linger, and slip down into your soul. Fulfilling you in a way you never knew words could.
This book isn’t for the faint of heart. It isn’t for the unexperienced reader, the innocent human. This book requires a soul to nurture it and appreciate it for what it is – pure unbridled brilliance.
If you think you are ready to experience something you’ve not yet encountered, if you’re ready to let your mind go, pick up a copy. But know, this impeccable writer and this exquisite tale will leave you changed…forever.
An American novelist, book critic, and magazine editor from Burbank, California, Allie Burke writes books she can’t find in the bookstore. Having been recognized as writing a “kickass book that defies the genre it’s in”, Allie writes with a prose that has been labeled poetic and ethereal.
Her life is a beautiful disaster, flowered with the harrowing existence of inherited eccentricity, a murderous family history, a faithful literature addiction, and the intricate darkness of true love. These are the enchanting experiences that inspire Allie’s fairytales.
From some coffee shop in Los Angeles, she is working on her next novel.