19 March 2015

I Would Pull Down Heaven: A Review of The Secret: The Irin Chronicles Book Three

The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain.
It's the loneliness of it.
Memories need to be shared.
~ Lois Lowry, The Giver

In 2015, I’m participating in Jeff Goins’ My 500 Words Challenge: writing at least 500 words a day for a year!  So dearest blog, although I’ve neglected you of late, I have never ceased writing!  YTD Word Count: 38,796

s it still love if you can’t remember your lover? 

If every meeting, every conversation, every smile, every little thing that pulled you in and made you hers is just…

Always just out of reach.

Is it still love if your lover returns to you a different man, with no memory 

Of the first time he saw you.
Of the first time you made him laugh.
Of the first time he kissed you.
Of the first time he made your soul sing.

How do you cope with the crippling fear that his return is a dream and you’ll wake only to lose him all over again?

The Last Chapter
A good writer pulls us out of our world and entertains us, taking the edge off a weary reality.

A great writer pulls us into our soul, showing us that we are not alone.  That pain and joy and love and loss are universal. 

She does this discreetly, weaving an entertaining and moving tale that not only takes that edge off, it helps us cope when we are forced to return to it.

Elizabeth Hunter is one of those great writers. 

Since I discovered the
Elemental Mysteries Series, I have yet to read a book that hasn’t led me to a deeper level of self-awareness while it soaks off the day to day stress.  Every story is well written, meticulously researched, psychologically accurate, and balances entertaining dialogue with a believable, dramatic love story.

The Secret is no exception. 

In fact, it may be her best story so far (no worries, Gio ~ you’re still my #1 book boyfriend).  If you aren’t familiar with
The Irin Chronicles, stop reading this right now, go buy all three books (The Secret is live today), cancel any appointments and Read. It.  With a large box of tissues beside you. 

If you have been following
Malachi and Ava’s story, then you know this last chapter is their most crucial.  That this is no ordinary love story.   It is real.  It is complicated.  Because when is love ever simple?

Malachi has yet to remember much if any of his past, including Ava.  And his talesm are slow to return.  Meanwhile, Ava still doesn’t know where her power comes from and she lives in fear of losing her reshon again.  

Have they healed enough to learn the secret the archangels have been hiding for millennia? A secret that could change the Irin forever?

To Know Her is to Love Her
The Singer dealt with loss and grief and the desire to give up when it feels like your soul has been shredded.  The Secret also involves loss ~ but it is the loss of memories and the seeming loss of a loved one who is physically present, yet no longer remembers you or why and how he fell in love with you. 

Loss that is real for those whose loved one suffers from Alzheimer’s.

Perhaps because my own parents are aging, or perhaps because I’m constantly searching for the why in everything, The Secret made me wonder: if love is defined by knowledge of the other, a knowledge gathered over time in shared moments, goals, purpose, and mutual respect, trust, and commitment ~ is it still love if all of that is erased?

We don’t love ~ truly love ~ a person until we know them.  It’s why I love the Biblical translation of sexual love as knowing.  My deepest desire is for my truest self to be fully known…and unconditionally accepted.  Because that is in part what healthy, interdependent love looks like.

So what does it mean to suddenly be unknown again?  To love someone who no longer seems to be the person they were when we first loved them?  And what does it mean to suddenly un-know?  To be told that you have a life, a shared history with someone that you can’t remember?

Pulling Down Heaven
Because Ava isn’t the only one suffering from loss.  In losing his memories, Malachi has lost a vital part of himself.  This causes him pain, not just for himself, but because this loss pains his mate.

Then comes a moment where a memory returns to him…a memory of where he was after he had been taken from her.  A place of “Perfect love.  He cries with joy because he is home….He is surrounded by love.  Complete. Replete.  He needs nothing.”  But he hears her voice and makes a choice.  A choice he does not regret.  A choice that is bittersweet.  A choice that hurts in the remembering.

Because although he regains Ava, he loses being in the presence of Perfect Peace.

Gifts given freely are more precious.
Barak, The Secret: The Irin Chronicles Book Three

Yet it is a choice Malachi made freely and one he would make again. 

Even if his memories never return. 
Even if he only has one year to spend with Ava.
Even if the pain of loss never completely goes away.

Because love is defined not just by fully knowing or being known by your beloved.  Nor is it defined solely by the presence of either joy or pain or the lack of them.  Love is always a choice.  A choice freely made.  A gift freely given.  Love is still love even if the particular memories of it are gone. 

Because love is always a choice.
Oremus pro invicem,
~ Mikaela

What did you think of the end of Ava and Malachi’s story?

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I received this book as an ARC from the author.  I have not been paid for this review.

Posts on La Belle are written with the following fonts: Georgia, Times New Roman, Vivaldi, Edwardian, and occasionally Baroque Script.

My Irin Chronicles Playlist: 
Irin Chronicles by Mikaela D'Eigh on Grooveshark

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