Kaleidoscope

Kaleidoscope

by Kevin Berry

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781494780968
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 01/04/2014
Pages: 230
Product dimensions: 5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.48(d)

About the Author

I've been writing off and on approximately forever. I'm middle-aged in a chronological sense, but young at heart. I've got a degree which I've never used and two diplomas, one in Hypnotherapy and the other in a subject I don't mention to anyone, as it was so long ago. I read widely, particularly specfic and YA, but also contemporary and some non-fiction. My favourite author is Connie Willis, but I mostly read indie authors nowadays. My other interests include editing, hanging out with other writers, walking, playing backgammon, dancing Ceroc and spending time with my two boys.

I've co-authored three humorous fantasy books with Diane Berry: "Dragons Away!" (on the strength of which we won the Sir Julius Vogel Award 2012 for Best New Talent), "Growing Disenchantments" and "Fountain of Forever", and have written two New Adult romantic comedy novels of my own, "Stim" and "Kaleidoscope", set in Christchurch, featuring students with Asperger's Syndrome.

I also enjoy copy-editing and proofreading other authors' manuscripts.

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Kaleidoscope 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Kristen_Noel More than 1 year ago
  Devoured is not even the correct word for what I did to Stim (the first book in the series) and Kaleidoscope. I absolutely adored these books and characters. Diversity is such a diverse thing. That sounds redundant, but hear me out. Too often, we get caught up on race and sexual orientation as the source of our diversity. (At least, I know I do.) And we often forget that diversity encompasses so much more than that. As someone who faces down depression and anxiety every day, it's really refreshing to see books from the point of view of someone who isn't what society deems normal. I don't have autism, but I could easily relate to the character of Robert.   But I don't want this review to seem too heavy. Kaleidoscope was filled to the brim with humor, both intentional and unintentional alike. I mean, there's a missing kitten named Sex. Yes, Sex. The references to the cat had me laughing out loud at some inappropriate times while reading.   Chloe was a character that I wanted to know more about from the very beginning of Stim. This made Kaleidoscope an enjoyable read since it's from her point of view. The thought process of Chloe is so authentic and unfiltered. I am so pleased that Kevin Berry gives an unabashed glimpse into the mind of Chloe.   I really loved this book. Authors like Kevin Berry are what make supporting Indie authors so easy. He has raw talent that shines through each of his works. I cannot recommend Stim and Kaleidoscope enough. Both books are hilarious and touching, and you'll be thinking of Robert and Chloe long after you finish them. **I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review with no compensation.
BooksDirect More than 1 year ago
Chloe is an Aspie like Robert, however, she suffers from a number of other conditions as well, most notably bipolar disorder. Chloe experiences the world "through a filter like a kaleidoscope; everything's there, but all jumbled up." She has difficulty making decisions, so she wears a set color for each day of the week and always orders the same take-out in order to avoid making decisions. Chloe has been on medication for her bipolar disorder for seven and a half months, but she wants to quit and become herself again. But things are never easy for her. She comes home from visiting her father in Australia, only to find that her cousin Stef has moved them all to a new house. Not one to deal with change, Chloe doesn't react too well. On top of that, another massive earthquake strikes Christchurch. As a result, their new house is destroyed, there's no power or water, her cousin Marinda is missing, her cat Sex is also missing, and she becomes obsessed with earthquake statistics. And now she's also off her meds. How will Chloe get back on track? Kaleidoscope is the sequel to Stim, this time told from the point-of-view of Robert's flatmate Chloe. Each book can be read as a stand-alone, but together they paint a fuller picture of the relationship between these two characters. It's interesting to read from Chloe's point of view this time, as we get an insight into her insecurities and quirks. She seems very "together" in Stim, but Kevin is probably an unreliable narrator because of his Asperger's Syndrome. I loved Chloe's neologisms (newly coined words, e.g., passenjerk, tripidation, idiosyncrazies, cuteability), and her passion for books and her violin. Through it all, the New Zealand earthquake is ever-present and is a whole character in itself. Chloe's attempt at writing a best-seller is a great touch. A delightful and insightful read. I received this book in return for an honest review.
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
Chloe has Asperger’s Syndrome, Bipolar Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Attention Deficit Disorder (which she doubts, because she "can concentrate on most things for as much as several minutes at a time"), Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and dyscalculia, as well as other disorders she doesn't list for us. In short, she's on a lot of meds, and maintaining a specific order for just about everything in her life is very important to her. Unfortunately, her world is thrown almost right away when she finds out that her roommates Stef (also her cousin) and Robert (also an Aspie, and Chloe's boyfriend) have moved to a new house in her absence--events at the end of book one (Stim, Robert's book) have led to making the move necessary--but no one told Chloe until she got off the plane. Now Chloe can't walk to university anymore, and she has to figure out where to put all of her things (she has certain clothes for each day of the week, and each day must have its own drawer--but her new dresser has only six drawers--a problem), and Robert's already started reshelving her books for her, which means she'll probably have to rearrange them as soon as he's done... And that's all before the earthquake hits. It happens in the middle of a school and work day, just as Chloe was sitting down to get started on her course reading for the new school year.  Next thing she knows, her dresser being one drawer short is no longer such a big issue--she's lost all of her clothes. And her cat. And her cousin--Stef's older sister is MIA. It takes her a few more days to realize she doesn't have her meds, either. But by then she's discovered coffee, and an energy she never had before. Why fix what's not broken? Clearly the drugs were only holding her back...  Dealing with a devastating act of nature would be hard enough for anyone, but for someone like Chloe who's also suddenly taken off meds? Recipe for disaster. Watching her nearly lose everything and then try to wrest her life back is quite a journey--with many funny and moving moments along the way. Kaleidoscope is definitely a worthy sequel to Stim. (Kaleidoscope could probably work as a standalone if needed, but getting the full picture of these two characters' lives from both sides--Stim is from Robert's point of view--will definitely enhance the reading experience.)  Rating: 4 stars / B+ I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
CrystalMarie218 More than 1 year ago
I recently read Stim, which is the story of Robert and found Kaleidoscope, the story of Chloe a much smoother and faster read. Her story focused on her Asperger’s and bi polar and how she dealt with the aftermath of a major earthquake. For her normal routine she must have things organized and structured in her own fashion or it will throw her off balance. When her house was destroyed and she found herself with only the clothes on her back, it sent her into a tail spin that was not easy to recover from. With the medicine that she was taking for her mental issues, she felt balanced, yet dead. Her intense emotions and creativity was gone, but her ability to function as society expected was good. When her medicine was trapped in the destroyed house, her change of routine and the loss of a friend she finds that life it too difficult to manage and slips back into her dark place waiting for the manic to approach. Along with the issues I have already mentioned, Chloe has to deal with her father ignoring her during a month long visit and her mother being in the hospital. She comes back to Robert after the visit and finds that she is going to be living in a new house because they were forced to move during her month long vacation. We get to see how detailed she is about some things and when Robert wants to unpack her books, she has some anxiety over it because it needs to be done her way. What I love about Chloe and Robert’s relationship is the acceptance and patience they have with each other. During Chloe’s “breakdowns” I was amazed at how calm Robert was in his matter of fact responses and how she accepted it and used that as a reminder to get control over her anxiety. They were a great fit in the first book and proved to be even more perfect in this one. Of course there were more funny moments like when they decided to try and make out in a tree only to land in the river and when she tried speed therapy. Her responses were laugh out loud funny. I think the author did a great job in giving us a glimpse in the lives of people with Asperger’s and doing it in not only an entertaining way but a realistic view point that most of us would never understand. I would highly recommend Stim and Kaleidoscope to readers who enjoy watching the abnormal make their own way in society that wasn’t made for them. *Copy provided for review* Reviewed by Tbird for Crystal's Many Reviewers
kirstyviz More than 1 year ago
Kevin Berry's first novel in this series, Stim, was one of my favourite reads of last year; it is a book which challenges society's stereotypes of people diagnosed with ASD in an honest and touching way. Knowing Chloe and her difficulties from Stim I wondered how Kevin Berry would translate this in Kaleidoscope. Chloe's diagnoses are less straight-forward than Robert's 'Autism Spectrum Disorder' label (although this too encompasses so many variables). She falls into what she refers to as her own "alphabet" of identities, "Over the years, the whitecoats have labelled me with diagnosis after diagnosis, each more exotic than those preceding it, including ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder), ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), which I think is just ridiculous because I can concentrate on most things for as much as several minutes at a time, GAD (Generalised Anxiety Disorder), dyscalculia and various others that I don'y even remember or never properly understood. I suppose it was just a matter of time before they called me bipolar and drugged the wilder side of me out of me." Chloe's story can be emotionally draining. During her periods of mania the pace is frenetic, but Kevin Berry asks us to be understanding and not to judge his heroine; without her medication she isolates herself from her support system, retreating into her own world which she feels she has control over. The Christchurch earthquakes of 2011 play an important role in Chloe's story and enforce her need for routine and order. The chaos they create in Chloe's life; losing her home, belongings, her cat, a loved one; are all catalysts for the drastic change we see in her. The earthquakes are an extreme example, but allow Kevin Berry to show how necessary routine is to individuals with certain conditions. The narrative in Kaleidoscope alternates between Chloe's journal entries in which we witness her very frank point of view about her everyday struggles, and an omniscient narrator who relays Chloe's interactions with other people. Despite her various labels and her periods of difficulty Chloe emerges as an intelligent young woman who is trying to establish a healthy relationship with her illness. The title of Kevin Berry's story has so much meaning; the world is made up of people, who like colours, are uniques, some brighter than other, but together we make up something of beauty. The word also has significance for Chloe, "The way I see things is like through a kaleidoscope - disjointed and broken, ever-changing, yet somehow beautiful in a structured way." This is another amazing and sensitive novel from Kevin Berry, whose own experiences are reflected in his writing. I received this as a complimentary review copy, but this has had no influence on my opinion.