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Posted January 17, 2011
The story centers around a group of beings living in the mountains, their physique oddly reminiscent of Bigfoot. They inhabit harsh climates where humans are unable to climb, let alone dwell. This elevation is both figurative and literal: they hold themselves above Homo sapiens in terms of understanding and culture. Here in the mountains, the "white hairs" pursue spiritualism and the freeing of the soul from the body.
The mysticism practiced brings to mind various religions in which meditation or some other practice can cause the spirit to separate from the physical state. Time loses all meaning to Farshoul while his ethereal form travels the world, as is often the case with these belief systems. It is in the ties between the transcendental and the earthly that the author showcases his creativity. The way in which Farshoul manifests the damage to his spirit-self forces the reader to consider the means by which we view others, as well as the sources of our capacity to care. That the physical body can remain unscathed even as the soul is maimed is a novel concept, as the two are typically inextricably linked in literature.
While the story itself shows great promise, its brevity inhibits the reader's ability to buy into the ideas that are being presented. The abrupt shifts between scenes made it feel as if I were cataloging facts rather than immersing myself in fiction. The experience was further marred by the author's seeming need to restate what has already been said several times over. The chosen verbiage wasn't varied enough to mask this deficiency, and my mind soon rebelled as it felt underestimated. Readers pick up more than one may think.
Given my odd affection for semicolons, I could not help but notice their frequent and inappropriate presence in multiple sentences within the first half of the novel. While this tick vanished in the latter portion of the book, it was replaced by the incorrect use of commas in place of the semicolons that the sentence structure demanded. The author appears to be undecided betwixt the two punctuation marks, and I question whether these were typographical errors or an error of grammatical judgment.
The White Hairs feels very much like a bedtime story or a myth to be passed down at the fireside. While there is certainly interest, there is also room for growth. Enriching the world of the "white hairs" and avoiding redundancy would greatly improve the experience of reading this work.
-Stimulated Outlet Book Reviews
Posted December 6, 2010
Storyline: Noah blends some interesting concepts for this story: astral projection, the existence or non-existence of the eternal soul and the acceptance of your fate.
Farshoul is a White Hair - a humanoid creature - that lives high in the mountains with his people. They're a world apart from man and yet so closely related. The White Hairs view humans with a sort of dismissive contempt for their lack of "sight" and appreciation for the world around them.
Like many of his tribe, Farshoul has the ability to travel outside of his body and see the world via astral projection. But, his experiences are completely different than that of his fellow White Hairs and he isn't entirely sure that he likes it. It changes him and he must fight to get back what he lost.
Grammar/Spelling: The book had no grammatical issues to speak of and zero spelling errors. My suggestion would be to combine some of the shorter sentences as there are sections that seem rather choppy and do not flow as well as other passages. I noticed a couple of formatting issues that will be easily corrected after another read through.
Character Development: The story follows Farshoul and his adventures with soul traveling, but I didn't feel as if I got to know Farshoul very well. His experiences were pretty life-altering, but I can only assume that as there is really very little development of his character. Noah created a potentially very interesting character/creature but fell short in explaining his outlook and thoughts prior to his initial soul traveling incident. Perhaps flushing Farshoul's character out a bit more would help the reader truly understand the exceptional differences in Farshoul's personality before and after his excursions in the astral planes.
Writing Style: The writing style was simple and lacked any technical aspects. The story was a little vague at times when it could have explored the White Hairs' past and their interactions with the humans and their revere for the Giants. The ending was also quite confusing as the Giants who were evil at one point in the story were not evil at the conclusion of the book.
Continuity: No issues with continuity.
Overall Rating: 4
I have to be honest and say that I don't believe that this is a book that I would have chosen on my own to read. I want to be fair and say that as this was not exactly my cup of tea, I am basing my rating purely on formatting, grammar and spelling. It might be better if it were geared toward young adult readers.
For myself, I was a little uncomfortable with the idea of the soul not being eternal. Not that I'm particularly religious, but I like to think of myself as sort of spiritual. Not in the hemp skirt and dreadlocks kind of way, but in a more casual, "Hey, yeah. I have soul. It's pretty cool and lasts forever..." This is simply because these beliefs help me sleep at night.
The White Hairs by Noah K. Mullette-Gillman is an interesting concept and great for people who are interested in astral projection, the question of the eternal soul and different spiritual planes. There are some scenes of mild violence, but no adult language or situations.
Posted July 11, 2010
This was a quick and thought-provoking read. I thoroughly enjoyed the writer's style and superlative use of imagery. The main character, in his imperfection, is one that all people can identify with and root for despite his faults. I look forward to seeing more from this author!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 8, 2010
I have a confession to make. I'm not that fond of fiction (as a literary genre or otherwise), so when I came across "The white hairs" by Noah K. Mullette - Gillman I admit that I wasn't exactly thrilled. Still, something in the minimal yet straight-to-the-point cover artwork and Doric photography crammed within the pages caught my attention and got me reading.
Half a dozen pages later, I realized I wasn't holding a generic fiction novel but rather a book of shadows if you will, a personal journal of the writer's soul: delivered in flowing language, "the white hairs" invokes strong imagery that cannot but be imprinted deeply at once at one's 'reading eye'. This novel takes you into a wild trip through the hidden pathways of a soul "bloody but unbowed". Strong colors dominate every scene that you can almost see flooding your mind: the bright white of the ice, the pitch black of the void. The writer artfully interchanges these color-schemes of his narrative with the transformations of the main character, Farshoul.
It's a novel of strong symbolisms and primeval motifs given in a dream-like way and with that same profound sense of clarity and transcendent realism one only experiences during REM sleep!
Reading "the white hairs" leaves a literary taste of an out-of-body experience. It's almost like astral projection. So, if you're scared or reluctant to engage in such practices, then definitely the next best thing is reading "the white hairs"!