Genre: Fiction, Psychology, Philosophy
This would have been a very quick read for me if it weren’t for the thesis proposal; on second thought maybe not, because when I picked this book up it was more like a rebound thing, because I haven’t yet moved on from All the Light We Cannot See. Nevertheless, this is what I think about the book. First off, I don’t trust Hector. I would never go to him if ever there comes a time where I need a psychiatrist. Blame the writer (or the translator) for that; the way the story flows, it just doesn’t feel genuine. It’s as if the writer (or the translator, whatever) is trying his best to make the story to be effortlessly fun and light, but it’s just not working, let me tell you that.
The thing is, only a certain amount of book that can pull that kind of simplicity without sounding annoying (I’m talking about books like The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime and The Hundred-year-old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared), and when you tried your best to sound like that, but sadly you fail, you get to the point where your readers are annoyed (and when I say readers, I meant maybe only me).
Aside from that, I like the concept of the book. Happiness is indeed a fluid like concept; not one person could agree on something when it comes to happiness, it’s very subjective yet it’s very intriguing; I applaud the writer for coming up with this idea. But, MUST YOU WRITE ABOUT ALL OF THESE WOMEN THAT HECTOR MET?? Come one, are you seriously saying that Hector is a magnet chick? Really? Come one. I can imagine that Hector is the kind of people that is nice to hang around with, and I can understand why Ying Li could be attracted to him, but Marie-Louise’s cousin? Pfft, please. Who are we kidding here?
All in all, I think this would make a very good read for those who are going through a little bit of a rough patch in life. It may not entirely solve everything, but if you’re wise enough, it could put your life into perspective and might make you a little bit more grateful (or possibly happy) for your life.