Brief Review: ‘The Immortal Life of Piu Piu’

The Immortal Life of Piu PiuThe Immortal Life of Piu Piu by Bianca Gubalke
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Some books come very close to being holy writ, sacred in their reach, profound in their wisdom, delightful in their humor, well-anchored in the world as we know it, fueled by the worlds we yearn for. This is such a book, with wonderful storytelling as well. You’ll meet Pippa, the girl who loves nature and thirsts for knowledge. You’ll meet Piu Piu, the who takes the plunge into a brief flirtation with our temporal life and thirsts for freedom. Look closely: behind the magic, you’ll probably meet yourself.

Well developed and memorable characters, an inventive story, and an immersion into the well-researched and well-described flora and fauna of the setting. Highly recommended and magical.

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Whispers of Forever

We are immortal, and do not forget;
We are eternal; and to us the past
Is, as the future, present.
— Lord Byron, in “Manfred”

When one of the seven spirits makes this comment to Manfred in Byron’s dramatic poem composed in 1817, Manfred replies “Ye mock me.”

While most people are not tortured by unexplained guilt to the point of calling spirits (supernatural rather than liquid) to help them forget, I wonder if they believe in an eternal now. Looking at immortality, we can say that which we see confirms it or denies it.

I see it confirmed everywhere I look, from nature to myths to science to intuition. Perhaps I’m a “glass is half full” rather than a “glass is half empty person.” If I have a bias in my writing, it’s in favor of forever. In “The Sun Singer” and “Garden of Heaven,” the eternal now is a constant whisper deep within these adventures.

While earth ties us down to the concepts of space and time, the eternal now presupposes no time and no space. Seeing this possibility beyond the illusion of physical reality is, I think, part of the human quest. Fortunately, in writing fiction, I do not have to prove that immortality is real or even that it’s real for those who think it’s real. My imagination is my guide, so I am content to whisper about the probabilities on the pathways my characters are walking.

My challenge as a writer is casting a strong enough spell with my words to keep the listener from saying “ye mock me” when he hears my characters whispering about forever. I don’t expect to change minds, for I am a storyteller with entertaining yarns. However, when a reader considers that there truly is something else on the other side of the illusion, I am well pleased.

–Malcolm

Available in multiple e-book formats