To Swim Beneath the Earth, Ginger Bensman

To Swim Beneath the Earth, Ginger Bensman

click image for amazon link

Genre:  Literary Fiction

Well, one of the best things for me about the whole E-Book phenomenon is the way its brought out so many fabulous books from authors that may not have had a chance in the old way, where it was mostly established authors and new ones were rarely seen, unless publishers convinced they were money spinners.
Now there’s a host of small publishers spawned, taking risks, using the cheaper eBooks route to try out stories before going all out  for print versions. they’re giving new authors a chance to get their works out, and along with those brave souls who go the self publishing route, giving us readers a fantastic array of stories that ,maybe wouldn’t have seen the light of day before. It took JK Rowling many many rejections before someone took a chance. What if she’d given up after the first, the fifth or the tenth one?
Its still not easy to get your book out but at least getting it published by the eBook route  and seen by readers  is proving easier. That’s great for authors and for readers like me who devour books, read every day.

So, this story is amazing, a debut book which is so well written, so absorbing and polished, that its hard to believe its a first book. The story itself is so intriguing, marrying the present with the possibilities of past lives.
I so felt for Megan, always seen as a bit odd, with a mum who wanted the psychiatrist to convince her it was all in her head, she just couldn’t deal with the possibilities of anything else. Thankfully her dad did though, and he encouraged her to talk to him, to explore the ideas she had, and to keep notes even as a young child.
Now he’s died, she’s lost her lifeline, but he’s left her one last thing, a ticket to a conference where the world she’s been dreaming of – not just at night but in sort of time slips during the day – is to be the subject.
Her family are horrified, want her to stay away, worry that its encouraging her “obsession” as they see it, and accuse her of being selfish. She knows though she just has to take this chance to find out more, to see if her dreams are rooted in anything real.

Its an intriguing prospect, reincarnation. I’ve always felt from a very young child that its possible, though I’ve never had any reason to- just something inside me I guess. That made it easy for me to believe in Megan, to want to follow where she led, and what a journey it was.
Its a wonderful read, veering from past to present but always in a format where its simple to follow,easily understood, not one where I am lost, floundering to see if I’m in the past or present.
I loved the characters we met. from Megan herself, the obnoxious doctor her mum took her to as a child and still relied on, to the people she met on her journey, the abrasive Corbin, to Eduardo ( swoon) and of course the enigmatic Koyam, and the very young girl they met when her father was dying. She was such a sad figure and so self contained, I can’t help wondering what would happen to her in the future.
To me that’s the mark of a good read, when I care about the characters and feel as if they are real.
I loved the descriptions of the land and people, both past and present and the way the story of Megan’s dreams gradually expanded, how the sceptical Corbin kept looking for rational explanations.

Its a story to treasure and to re read. I love too that its a stand alone, a story with the perfect ending, and one I felt really satisfied when I finished, instead of as so often happens, feeling I needed more from the ending, needed to know what really happened.

Stars: Five, magical read, a journey well worth taking

ARC supplied by Netgalley and publisher


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About jeanniezelos

I'm an avid reader, love my kindle and I have my head in a novel for hours daily : ) Mum used to say I'd read toilet paper if it was printed- it wasn't, so i had to contend myself with the back and sides of the cereal packets. I've always Needed to read and we had few books when i was a child hence my penchant for reading anything including adverts then... I review mainly contemporary, erotic and paranormal romance books though dystopian and urban fantasy also appeal. I'm currently rated around the 300 mark on for my reviews. I try to keep them structured and to say what I do and don't like about a book so other readers can use my review as a guide to whether they may enjoy the book.

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