What would you do if you got a message from a past life? That’s the question facing Paul Weeres after a party trick brings him more than he – or anyone – anticipated. Paul’s journey from skepticism to understanding – set in the latter decades of the Twentieth Century – parallels the tale a century earlier of Michael McSwain, the seeker who eventually leaves Paul his message. As Paul seeks to understand the meaning and the truth in the message Michael has left about the soul they share, we also see Michael – living in the American Midwest and Great Plains of the late Nineteenth Century and early Twentieth Century – facing similar internal struggles as he learns truths that he will eventually pass on to the future. Living in far different times, the two men learn to cope with and to embrace joy, sorrow, fear, love and all the other stuff of life.
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If you believe in reincarnation then you’ll find this book especially intriguing. Greg Erickson builds the idea of reincarnation into a fascinating tale of how it might work. But, don’t let the reincarnation theme fool you. The real joy of reading Memory’s Gate is the way the story is told. Each scene was realistic and the dialog was great. I easily put myself into each setting. The story also presents an interesting comparison of the cultural norms of the 1930’s with those of the more modern 1980’s and 1990’s. The only drawback was the variety of characters developed. I often found myself paging back to remind myself of who was involved.
A wonderful read! Thoughtprovoking historic romance with a metaphysical bend. Would be fun & interesting for book club discussion.
Erickson has skillfully woven history, romance, and the supernatural into one coherent and fun-to-read novel. The historical details are accurate, and the story -- while fantastic -- will have you believing every word. This book would be a good one for book club discussions, too. Paul's story will raise questions about the reader's own past.