A Crack In Forever
Grade : A+

This book packs an emotional wallop unlike anything I have experienced in a long time. I started reading it at 11 o'clock at night and didn't quit until I finished it three hours later. I was sleep-deprived, but all I can think of is how much more deprived I would be if I had never read this simple, yet gripping and compelling story.

Alexandra Taylor is a struggling young artist, and Eric Moro, a poor, first-year medical student, when they first meet. Alex is doing some drawings for a book for a professor at the medical school Eric attends, and Eric, looking for some extra cash, is the model she uses for some of the drawings. Their relationship, powerful from the word go, is open, honest, and emotionally intense. The magic of their relationship is that it is impossible to remain just an observer. The many images of their relationship are so well-drawn and in tune with who Alex and Eric are that the story explodes out of the confines of the book, and becomes a vivid and haunting mental reality.

Eric proposes to Alex one night on a cold Atlantic beach. In the ensuing blissful commotion, the ring Eric purchased for the occasion is lost. Despite their frantic and desperate efforts to retrieve it, the ring, a simple, gold band engraved with the words "Together Forever," is lost to the constant ebb-and-flow of the ocean's tide. So much in love, Alex and Eric figure "Together Forever" is theirs with, or without, the ring.

Their is, however, just as the title of the book implies, crack in forever. It is something from Eric's past that rears its sad, unfortunate, and ugly head, and it puts their love to the ultimate test of life and death.

The crack in forever is, at the same time, the tragedy and the beauty of this story, and for all the beauty of this story, it is not a pretty one. This is not a love story of scented boudoirs, designer clothing, and lush countrysides. Like its urban setting, this book is gritty, real, and, paradoxically, beautiful and ugly at the same time. This book also does not offer the traditional, comfortably happy ending either. Taken in context, however, the ending is merely another one of the many things that makes this book unforgettable.

A Crack in Forever isn't just a book - it's an experience that will have you alternately flying high on love, and then have you sinking to the deepest depths of despair - a despair that exists only side-by-side with deep love and profound emotion. It's a keeper, but physically keeping the book isn't really necessary to having it forever. As Alex and Eric learned, some things in life, such as love, can be so powerful and all-encompassing that, once experienced, they are forever no matter what else happens. This book is definitely a forever kind of story.

Reviewed by Anne Ritter
Grade : A+

Sensuality: Warm

Review Date : May 4, 1998

Publication Date: 1998

Review Tags: HIV and AIDS artist grief

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