I always like the books that linger with me for days after I have finished the final pages. The ones that get in my head and make me think about all the what ifs and what would I do and so forth. The Book of Someday by Dianne Dixon is one of those reads. It is a haunting story of three women who deal with the represcussions of a fateful decision. Years later, two of the women are haunted and struggling to find their happiness. What if things were different? Do you think one has paid enough for her actions? There is certainly plenty to ponder over with this book. I had the opportunity to interview Dianne and ask her some of my remaining questions. Before we get to that, let me tell you a bit about Dianne:
Dianne Dixon (winner of the Humanitas Prize for Excellence in Screenwriting and double Emmy nominee) regularly received glowing reviews for her work in television: “Her characters dance off the page.” (Jane Hewland/Sky Television, UK) “An enormously gifted writer.” (LaVerne McKinnon/CBS Television) “Her knowledge of storytelling is both clear and articulate.” (Nate Hopper/Sony Pictures).
Now Dianne is receiving equally enthusiastic response to her work as a novelist: “Captivating, fascinating.” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer) “Absorbing and provocative.” (Huffington Post) “Convincing prose, particularly the dialogue.” (Kirkus) “An exciting new writer, capable of creating a well-paced, emotional page-turner of the best kind.” (Katie Crouch, New York Times bestselling author of Girls in Trucks and The Magnolia League).
The Language of Secrets is Dianne’s debut novel. Her second book, The Book of Someday, has a September 2013 publication date. And her third novel is scheduled for in summer/fall of 2014. You can find Dianne on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.
Here is my interview with Dianne:
The Book of Someday is certainly a book that will stick with me for days to come. What is the final message that you hope readers will take away from the book?
Every reader will come away with a slightly different take on what the book has to say but, for me, one of the most important messages in The Book of Someday is when Evelyn tells Livvi, “Find your purpose. Use the power of your love to fulfill it.” I believe each of us has a purpose in life. And when we combine our purpose with the power of love, we can do great things.
Do you think Livvi will be able to move forward and live her life without regret?
Hmmm…that’s a hard question to answer. Regret is something everyone experiences at one time or another. But whatever Livvi’s regrets might be, as she moves forward with her life, she’s a woman who would never, ever regret any sacrifices she made to keep Grace safe and happy. Livvi truly has a mother’s heart.
The ending was left open, did you write it that way hoping people would choose their own ending or did you have other intentions?
Let me think about this for a minute. Well, I guess the way I see the story in The Book of Someday is that the character’s lives, like the lives of the readers, are on-going. To me, Livvi and the others are living, breathing people. And the story in the book ends at a point where most of the characters are still alive. So the question of how each of their journeys ultimately turns out won’t be answered until the day they die.
Can you give any type of hint as to what the future holds for Livvi? Will her Book of Someday be complete?
I think the future holds good things for Livvi. And, yes, she probably will have her personal Book of Someday be complete. But I’m guessing that life will play its usual tricks…many of the things she gets will be what she asked for, but not exactly what she asked for.
I thought David was a wonderful character, why didn't he speak up sooner?
David did try to tell Livvi, and show her, how much he cared. David was always there, from the very beginning. But Livvi was initially intimidated by David’s background, and then preoccupied with Andrew, which is why it took her a long time to notice this beautiful man who was so very much in love with her.
Any hint as to what Micah's fate is?
I have my suspicions about what happens to Micah. But I’d love to hear from readers about the fate they think Micah deserves.
What is up next for you?
My next book is scheduled for publication in 2014. It deals with twin sisters who share an oddly intertwined existence that’s blown apart by an act of violence, committed by a stranger. Then, years later, a chilling clue to what caused that violence, an object so bizarre it’s heart stopping, is found in a suitcase hidden in the attic of a house that one of the sisters has only recently moved into. The question of how that suitcase got into that attic changes the sisters’ lives forever. The answer to the question is startling, and it’s rooted in guilt and love—and a heartbreaking search for atonement. As soon as I finish the manuscript, and deliver it to my editor, I’m looking forward to delving into all the new books I’ve been wanting to read.
What are some of your favorite reading recommendations?
Compelling fiction written by really good writers. And poetry by Donald Justice, W.S. Merwin and Billy Collins.
Thank you, Dianne for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer my questions! Thanks to the wonderful folks over at Sourcebooks, I have a copy of The Book of Someday up for grabs today. To enter read the Contest Policies and fill out the Rafflecopter. This is open to U.S. residents only. Good Luck!a Rafflecopter giveaway
Here is my review:
The Book of Someday by Dianne Dixon
Someday, Livvi Gray will break free from her past. Someday, she will escape her recurring nightmare about that stranger in a shimmering silver dress. Someday, she will have a family of her own. Now she's found Andrew, and someday seems to be right around the corner. But there's so much Livvi doesn't know.
Shortly before her thirtieth birthday, she will come face-to-face with the stranger from her dream-an encounter that will alter Livvi's future and crack open everything she knew about her past. Livvi is swiftly moving toward the ultimate turning point in her life-and she's not the only one. Linked by an unforgettable mystery, photographer Micah and young mother AnnaLee are also being rapidly drawn into a web of devastating secrets about the unexpected ways in which we choose to protect-and betray-the people we love.
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published September 3rd 2013 by Sourcebooks Landmark
Source: Publisher for an honest review.
Three and a half stars: An intriguing book that will stick with you long after you finish.
Livvi at twenty six is just learning to live. After suffering through years of neglect from her father and enduring the cruel words from her stepmother, she has finally escaped her tragic childhood. She meets Andrew and immediately she is swept off her feet. All too soon, the romance hits a few rocky patches, and she is forced to examine some hard truths. Meanwhile, Micah Grey has spent years trying to overcome the one mistake that led her down a path of regret and heartache. She received news that she has cancer. Hurriedly, she seeks out the few people in her life who mattered, trying to decide whether she deserves to live. Both she and Livvi are haunted by the same beautiful woman in the shimmering dress and pearl button shoes. Who is this woman and what is her connection to the two women?
What I Liked:
- This book is told through three view points: AnnaLee, a young mother in 1986 who is suffering through the difficulties of her imperfect marriage, Micah, a driven and successful woman who has everything but love, and Livvi a young lady who desperately wants to finally feel loved and accepted. I was eager to find the one thread that tied all three women together. It takes almost the entire read before the commonalty is finally revealed, and when I learned what it was I was stunned. I loved the mystery in this one.
- The story presents some interesting questions on life, love, forgiveness, betrayals, secrets and overcoming the burdens of the past. The scenarios are difficult, and it is hard to determine what the best option would be. This book definitely gave me a lot to think over. However, I was pleased that the story wasn't overdramatic and heavy.
- Livvi is a character that I grew to admire. She moved beyond her tough childhood and made a name for herself. Once she becomes involved with Andrew, things went a bit downhill. I wanted her to take a stand and take charge of the situation, but on the other hand, I could see why she didn't. Her background causes her to be a bit shy and reluctant, so even though I wanted her to be strong, it doesn't fit with her character. Through it all, I appreciated the way she opened her heart and transformed. Perhaps she doesn't always make the best or the right choices, but do any of us?
- AnnaLee's story is particularly haunting. I was shocked at the final reveal in her storyline and heartbroken. I was truly thinking about the outcome for days. Disgusted with her husband, sad and wishing it had been different.
And The Not So Much:
- The romance is a sticky point for me. As I discussed before, I hated that Livvi let herself be manipulated, but I could see how desperate she was to cling to the love she had long sought. I was sad at her final choice because I am not sure it was the right one, and I thought she made it more out of love for the the little girl than anything. I felt like she was giving up her chance at happiness. However, I could understand why she made the choice that she did.
- Micah's point of view was a hard sell. I found that I thoroughly disliked her up until the very end when I learned her tragic secret. I don't think she is meant to be a likable character as it becomes evident that she has lead a life of regret, heartache and loneliness due to her poor decisions. What I felt was missing, though, was a bit more back story as to why she turned out the way she did. There is a tiny bit of revelation when she confronts her mother, but I wanted to know more. What led her to spend the summer away from her parents when she was fifteen? Why was she so angry and hateful? What happened to her after that summer? I would like to have seen more regarding her relationship with both her parents.
- Jack's story line is dark and unhappy. I was stunned time and time again when I learned more about his true character. I was hoping for a bit of redemption when it came to him, but that wasn't in the cards. Why was he so weak and unhappy?
- Finally, I didn't like the way the second suitor presented himself to Livvi. Why did he wait so long to make his case? It was too little too late, and I wished that he had been more upfront and in the picture more. I hardly knew him.
The Book of Someday is a haunting look at how bad decisions can lead to a lifetime of regret and unhappiness. Is it possible to overcome it? Take a look at Micah, Livvi and Jack and decide for yourself. This is a book that will linger with you long after you finish. Give it a try if you are in the mood for an interesting mystery and a hard look at some of life's harsh realities. I am glad I took the chance on this one.
"We all on same journey, only riding different horses."
"You ain't the center of the universe. You ain't got the power to carve the future or erase the past. All you got is today, and all you can do is try to do as good as you can till the sun goes down. Then tomorrow get up and try and do a little better. What you did, you did---and you're stuck with it."
"She has gone to sit at the kitchen table and is running her hand over its surface----wood worn smooth by the generations who have gathered around it to rejoice. And to grieve. To grow up and to grow old."
"No matter how painful your life has been, you have the choice to learn from your past and then leave it. You have the choice. Every day. To love and be loved. To find your purpose. To work and and to give. And to shape your world into something that's quite remarkable."
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.