Abraham, by Daniel Backer

I sort of feel like I just read someone’s account of their most recent acid trip. There’s a whole lot of weird spirituality that goes on in Abraham, and it stems from a giant gash in the back of his head. No clue where it came from, but it put him in the path of an eccentric monk that’s determined to heal him. However, Tom’s methods and ideas of healing are…suspect.

The first thing that stood out about this novel was the fact that it was written in second person. I think it would have been slightly better utilized if the character that was “you” wasn’t as defined as he was. Abraham was a set character, and it felt out of place to hear him described in second person rather than first or third.

There’s also a lot of weirdness that goes on. Some of it suited the story well—it was meant to be weird and strange and it succeeded there. I felt like scene and time transitions happened at odd times or without much warning and it knocked me out of the story. It was usually pretty quick to recover, but it would take me a while to get back into the flow of the story.

As for the story itself, the premise of the plot was unique. It’s definitely not for everyone, let me go ahead and say that. It was entertaining for sure, and the odd series of events made sense in weird ways. The characters were odd, and by the time you reached the end, you’re left wondering if any of them were even real. Or wondering if you yourself are real.

This novel had its good and bad. I’m all about different—I try to go out of my way to celebrate that fact when I come across it. This novel was definitely very different, and mostly in the right ways. However, I feel as though there were some areas that could be improved to build upon the strengths already present.