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Paperback A Red Heart of Memories Book

ISBN: 0441007686

ISBN13: 9780441007684

A Red Heart of Memories

(Book #1 in the Spores Ferry 0.5 Series)

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Book Overview

Matilda "Matt" Black possesses the unique ability to speak with inanimate objects and witness the dreams of other people. Alone, yet never lonely, she's now found a kindred spirit in Edmund Reynolds--a wandering witch of a spiritual quest to help those in need. Together, these two special people who live outside normal reality will embark on an odyssey of the imagination. They will look into the darkest depths of the past. And they will encounter...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

we don't need anti-depressants, we need magic!

To all you geniuses who hate this book for either a. the fact that it champions the life of hobos, or b. the fact that you don't understand real psychological problems, maybe you should go back to the safer land of epic fantasy novels that don't require you to actually have feelings. If you have ever experienced any of the following: abuse, incest, rape, depression, dissociation, and/or an identity disorder, you should read this book. Not only it is a fantasy book that reads like my talks with my therapist, but it cleverly comes up with magical solutions for all our psychological issues. I am partially glad that it exists because it lets me know someone else has figured out that we don't need anti-depressants, we need magic, but it also frustrates me that I don't have any Gold to make me not depressed anymore. That stuff would really come in handy.

Rising Star of Fantasy

Hoffman is one to watch. For those of you who loved Zelazny, Sturgeon, and Bradbury, keep your eye on this lady. She's the next generation. She has a very sweet style, and blends fantastic imagery with a kind of magic that helps, hinders, and drives charcters to discover themselves.

Hoffman shows sense of wonder and whimsical humour

Matt Black, a homeless woman, is sitting on a park bench eating discarded sandwiches when a man steps out of a nearby ivy-covered wall. "The leaves wove together into green skin, the skin smoothed and formed a man, and then a man all green stepped away from the wall, shaking his head slowly."The man is Edmund. Edmund wanders the world, going where the spirit moves him, and the spirit has told him to follow Matt. Thus begins a most extraordinary fantasy adventure set in the contemporary U.S., slightly to the left of reality.I'm not going to say much else about the plot of A RED HEART OF MEMORIES because I don't want to spoil it or prejudice readers. Not being a big fan of fantasy or some of the book's themes (or California for that matter), I would likely have avoided it based on a plot synopsis. However, Hoffman's terrific writing made it a novel that I'm glad to have read.The characters in A RED HEART OF MEMORIES are well drawn and compelling, but what impressed me most was the amazing sense of wonder Nina Kikiri Hoffman brought to her magic scenes, and her whimsical humour. Hoffman uses magic to transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. For example:"The rocks were singing.Matt kneeled and placed her hand on them. Gold bared her palm --Hello?-- she thought.''Greetings, man-thing. Thing like those that chopped us and split us and carried us and buried us, looking for seams and nuggets and ore. Greetings, thing that stripped us from our parent and brought us to a new place. Greetings, thing that left us shattered here an age ago.----Uh, greetings,-- Matt thought. None of these events sounded very positive, but the rocks didn't seem too angry about them. On the other hand, all the rocks had sharp edges."My only serious criticism of A RED HEART OF MEMORIES is that the end of the book lacks impact, particularly given the emotional intensity of earlier chapters. Part of the weakness is structural. The book's viewpoint character, Matt, is pulled into a quest to solve Edmund's problem, and this in turn draws them into solving someone else's problem. These two steps distance us from Matt's needs and emotions, thus making the ultimate payoff inevitably less intense. Moreover, the climax of this magical quest begs for pyrotechnics and, unfortunately, Hoffman opts for a low key resolution. It is more realistic in human terms, certainly, but it lacks dramatic closure.The disappointing end of A RED HEART OF MEMORIES reminded me a great deal of THE HEALER'S WAR, a fantasy novel by Elizabeth Anne Scarborough, based on her experiences as a nurse in Viet Nam. Because Scarborough hadn't resolved her feelings about Viet Nam, she wasn't able to resolve her protagonist's problems either, consequently this otherwise excellent book drizzled to an uncertain stop.Hoffman has done a better job, nonetheless she tackled an ambitious, thorny theme and it's little wonder she had difficulties. I still recommend this b

Amazing and Engaging

I'm not usually a reader of fantasy books, but I couldn't resist picking this up. And I'm not sorry I did. Once I plunged in, I couldn't stop. I identified with Matt and Edmund, and almost drank the story line. It was mercilessly easy to follow, and as I finished the story, I found myself wanting to read more of their adventures. This book completely flew by, and I was sorry to see it end.

This book was AMAZING!

I normally don't read books like this but it just sucked me in. I can't say much more than that...it will capture you from the first sentence. Nina Hoffman has delivered a work of art with something for every kind of reader and I only hope that we can see more books with Matt.
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