5 completely gutted Stars
I think the human experience can be boiled down to a string of experiences. Childhood. The teenage years. Falling in love for the first time. Sex. Work. Friendship. Death. On a very base level, we all have at least a little experience with all of it. Regardless of the color or volume or breadth of our involvement in the life we lead, on a foundational level, there is room for relation. Connection. Being seen.
Very rarely do we actually see each other like that however. Stripped down. Utterly bare. To the bones of our being.
We all get so busy cloaking ourselves in purpose, perspective, darkness, light that we forget the fundamental place from which we all originate.
Mud Vein took me down to the studs. Laid me flayed across my own landscape. And every time it cut a little deeper all I could get myself to say was, thank you.
Tarryn Fisher has written an inexplicable study of human nature. She takes a woman who is so completely subject to her mud vein, to her darkness, that she physically cannot allow people to get close to her. Two men have tried. One shut the windows and doors to her soul, bought her black out drapes even. The other is the light. From waking until unconsciousness, attempting to meld with the darkness. Coexist with it in some undefined harmony so neither cancels the other out but simply breathes the same air.
Senna Reynolds goes on a tremendous journey in this book. Through unbelievable pain, sadness, regret, inspiration, scars, dreams and awakening. There were times when I wanted to scream at her. Times when I wanted to pour her a drink. Times when I wanted (and did) to just cry with her. Times when her wit cut me nearly as deep as her pain. Senna is one of those solitary characters that exists outside of comparison or grounding. If she learned to fly in these pages, I would believe her wholesale because she is so distinctly powerful.
Isaac Asterholder possesses the kind of strength you only hear about. In stories told in families about war heroes. In the “classics.” Strength that you dream about but shudder to think about the circumstances in which such a thing could be brought forth. Strength upon which faith is built. He meets Senna exactly where she is, while at the same time telling her tales about other places, other things she can feel, believing for her that those people, places and things can exist in the same place as she.
This book is gorgeous and horrific and has shifted me off my axis. Fisher’s writing is brutally honest, illuminating and razor sharp in its precision. She took completely normal words and wove them in such away that they burrowed their way into my very being. Snaked around my spine. Infiltrated my mind. I feel infected by this book. I’ll never totally shake it. No matter how much time passes, no matter how many other books I read the rest of my life, there will always be this book, residing in me. Taking up space, shifting around occasionally so I never lose track of it.
I’m grateful for its companionship. Grateful for the things it made me feel. Grateful for the things it allowed me see. Grateful to be irrevocably changed. Grateful for this experience to add to my cannon. Grateful to be a little less alone with its addition.