The Letter Book Review

Anthony Sciarratta’s The Letter (Post Hill Press) is a romance that examines both the power of belief and also the strength of love. 

Author Anthony Sciarratta

Victor Esposito is a novelist who came to success in this thirties through each work-related featuring a very distinctive female protagonist.

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His readers are unconscious that she is not exclusively (or wholly) a creation of fiction: She is based upon Eva Abrams, a vivid and quirky individual he met by opportunity at concert simply over a decade prior to. Eva, married with three children, was as attracted to Victor as he is to her. The 2 undertook an intense however paintotally platonic affair that lasted about year. “How might you see someone you know is perfect for you and never act on your feelings?”

After meeting two and three times a week, Eva damaged it off with no explanation. Throughout the occurring years, the 2 had no call. But she ongoing to be his muse, fueling his creative process: “To write a book about someone, to capture every groove of their face, curve of their body, and believed in their head, takes an excellent deal of examining … It was a unique bond they shared that no perkid would ever before pertained to understand also.”  

Now in his forties, Victor is a effective writer living in a luxurious Manhattan apartment. One night, he is swarm in the time of a bodega hold-up while saving a mom and also kid, resulting in his ending up in a coma. When Eva learns of this, she automatically leaves her Long Island also residence to be at his bedside. His mom, Barbara, immediately recognizes who this woman need to be: “Victor has no children, no wife. You’re the only mark he left on this people. His life’s occupational is bereason of you.”

While sitting vigil, Eva examines the choices that have actually brought her to this point. Coming from an abusive and unsecure childhood, Eva provided up her dreams of being a musician for the constancy of residential life, married to the stable but disassociated Stanley. While being a mother gave her good joy, the marriage was never fulfilling causing a gnawing sense of loss.  

Meanwhile, Victor does not reacquire consciousness. He is transported to a limbo wbelow he, too, examines his life selections, in specific his brief partnership with Eva that urged the change in his career from carpenter to writer. In this netherpeople, he is guided by the enigmatic Benedict, who transforms out to be someone from Victor’s previously life. This half-human being becomes lived in via crucial figures of his and also Eva’s backgrounds.

Throughout, the personalities are revealed in all their humankind, wearing their scars just below the surconfront. Sciarratta is not afrhelp to show confrontation or petty jealousies.

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These moments lfinish additionally measurement and also texture.  

The cover of ‘The Letter’

Also current is the shadowy figure of Louis, who appears just before the bodega occurrence, and also then returns in the book’s last chapters. He is the dark angel that lurks in the mind’s shadows: “I bet you have actually most regrets currently. You had everything: Money, health and wellness, and also an excellent career. Being a good guy isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, huh, buddy?” He is a chilling figure that provides temptation and relief. This emissary of worst fears adds additionally dispute to the final road in Victor’s journey.  

While the book is mainly a romance, it has actually aspects of mystery as Sciarratta unravels his lead characters narratives.  

His lovers’ consummation is inexplicable — if not distinct — in its establishing. It is both ardent and thorough. However, this does not in any kind of method obscure the romantic pressure of the novel. Eva is his “North Star, guiding him through a depression by reflecting him what unconditional love feels prefer. She had looked previous his sadness, despair, and also anger to find a guy via a beautiful soul …” A pair of socks provided at a candlelit lunch in the park end up being a specifically compelling totem, representing a deeper caring than even the most fervid caress can display.

The story additionally nods to the solace drawn from belief: “Eva defended those she loved via a shroud of prayer, hoping that God would certainly bmuch less the lives that meant so a lot to her.” It is this mix of the spiroutine and the visceral that are the structures of both the story and also the connection. Whether drawn from religion or from nature, they find their way. In a poignant episode, Victor sees himself in a wounded bird that he gently cradles in his hands; knowing that it desires to live yet likewise accepting that fatality is part of the airplane of humale visibility.  

At some point, The Letter addresses the worry of soul mates. This is seeded at the outset and also blooms in its epilogue. It is around the alchemy of love and its power to heal wounds, whether emotional or physical. It is a bold statement in a book that tells its story via straightforward passion and wide-eyed honesty.