BOOK REVIEW: CHANGING HISTORY
Seven international travelers are caught in a sudden snowstorm in the mountains of Tibet. Snow was blowing into huge drifts. The wind stopped for a moment and revealed a group of people trying to descend a steep slope. The person leading the group yelled that something was ahead. The group was thankful because they thought death was imminent. What they saw ahead was a teahouse. A monk and a nun ran the teahouse. They provided shelter, hot tea and something to eat for the group.
Is it just a coincidence that these people, who did not know each other, ended up here together or did they arrive at the teahouse for some reason that was meant to be?
In fact, the travelers were wondering the same thing. After dinner Cibi asked the group – “So somehow we have met and gathered here at this teahouse. Very curious how seven wanderers traveling alone (except of course for Lana and Raz) came together as a group at this time in this place. Don’t you think?”
It was decided that each person would tell a personal tale leading to him or her being in Tibet. This way they could see if there was something in common between them. Also, it would make the time go by faster. Now the stories began – let me say that the stories that were told by each person really take the reader on an interesting journey. For fear of giving away some spoilers, I will not detail any of the individual stories.
Do the travelers find a common thread between them? What happens when they leave the teahouse and continue on their journey? One question you will want to think about as you read this book is “Can our present actions change the past and create the future?” – the author makes this statement. Just think about that for a moment before you even start reading this book.
One of the things that impress me about certain novels is uniqueness. Changing History is a book that falls in this category. The author has written a novel that is unlike anything I have ever read before. He does an excellent job of setting the atmosphere for the story from the very beginning with the travelers stranded in a sudden snowstorm and being brought together. The reader will feel a bit of mystery wondering if there is a reason they all happened to meet in that very place. One of the things I liked best about this book is it really brings out the cultures and traditions of the people of Tibet. The reader also gets a very picturesque description of what it would have been like to be there with this group of people. You will feel like you are right there as each person is telling his or her story. As each person starts their tale, it does not take long for the reader to get drawn into the details. This happens because the author makes it so interesting that the reader can’t wait to get to the end to find out what really happened to each individual. You, as the reader, will find yourself doing a character study as you go along. One thing for sure is you will have some very interesting characters to analyze. Each character will make the reader really do some thinking about what they have done and where they are going.
The reader will find poetry and prose throughout the book. After you read the poetry, sit there and think about what you have read. Your thoughts just might surprise you! The individual stories touch on many subjects such as religion, politics and the environment just to name a few.
How Kuff has traveled the world and you will be able to see how he turns this experience into a novel that is a wonderful read. This is the type of story that remains with the reader for a long time. I also like a novel that makes a reader do some thinking and this is exactly what Changing History does. As you read each person’s story, you will be doing some deep thinking and you will probably come to the same conclusion – we all play an important role today in making future history. This book is a compelling read and one you should add to your reading list. It is one that you will thoroughly enjoy.
REVIEWED BY NANCY EATON
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