Saturday, June 29, 2013

A Million Heavens by John Brandon

A Million Heavens by John Brandon

New Mexico.  Small towns.  Desert.  Connections.
Every Wednesday there is a vigil for Soren outside in the parking lot.

The Wolf
Is a loner. He makes his nightly rounds around town.  He observes the people and listens.  He is mysterious, always hiding and waiting in the background.

Soren's Father
My son lies in a coma.  The doctors don't know why.  He is perfectly healthy.  I took him to his first piano lesson that fateful day.  The piano teacher said he sat down and played.  He played an amazing original piece that last 15 seconds and then fainted.  I wonder if he will wake up?  I haven't been able to leave the hospital room.  I am confused and confined.

I attend the weekly vigils for that boy.  I'm a college student and I used to be a member of a band until the songwriter died.  His name was Reggie.  God, I miss Reggie.  I live with my mother who sits in a wheelchair all day and watches TV.  She cares more about her chickens than she cares about me.  My life is out of control.  I hate my job,  I am mad at the world and I want someone to suffer.

I died in a car accident.  I am stuck in the afterlife and I am not sure what to do.  I was a great songwriter and my band was successful.  I think I fell in love with the guitarist, Cecilia.  I am not sure what I am supposed to do here in Heaven.

I attend the weekly vigils with my boyfriend Arn.  I lied and told him I was in my 27 but I am really 33.  I recently got divorced and moved to New Mexico to get a new perspective.  California is just too overwhelming right now.  I'm trying to get pregnant but Arn doesn't know.  He is an easy going guy and nothing seems to bother him.  He loves bacon and our whole condo smells like it.  From the terrace I have a good view of the desert.

The Gas Station Owner
I work all day, every day including the weekends at my gas station.  I usually close at 9pm and head out back to drink a few whiskeys by myself while looking into the desert.  I've always been afraid of that damn desert.  Maybe I should get out there and challenge the desert to a duel.

Mayor Cabrera
Oh yes, I am the mayor of this broken down town, Lofte and hotel manager of the Javelina.  Tourists used to visit here but now the town is dying.  I only rent out, one to two hotel rooms a night.  It is kinda pathetic.  Since my wife died, I quit talking to her family.  I am in love with a professional woman who I visit once a month.  I need to make some changes in my life and make things right.

One State.  A group of people.  A wolf.  Connected by a place. Connected by an event.

BookSnob (me)
A Million Heavens is a novel of place, people and the connections they make.  It is intriguing and interesting how Brandon takes a group of seemingly average, unconnected people and darn it, makes you care about what happens to them in the end.  The characters are complex, the writing style is unique and the story is dark with rays of light shining through. A Million Heavens is full of multiple perspectives, with a little love, arson, music and revenge thrown in.