The Other Place
(Other Place #2)
Publication date: July 5th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult
Living in Justin Flaherty’s mind has never been easy. Unfortunately, things are about to get much worse…
At eighteen years old, most guys are chasing girls or dreams. Justin, on the other hand, wants to draw and be left alone. He’s been diagnosed with schizophrenia, but it’s more than that. He’s in tune with the Dark Energy that surrounds us all, and can see how it controls people’s actions. Sometimes, the Dark Energy will give him visions, to help him on the road to enlightenment.
When his mother hooks up with a Baptist preacher named David who believes Justin’s schizophrenia can be cured with prayer, Justin knows he has to get out—or risk involuntary commitment in a religious facility.
After a brush with incarceration, Justin takes off to San Francisco, where his drawings are not just noticed, but admired…
Justin’s bizarre and beautiful drawings create a stir in the art world. Meanwhile, he’s homeless, couch surfing, and trapped in a continuous battle with his mental illness. His salvation is a girl named Liria Czetski with a shady past. They’d met a year ago, and she’s appeared in his visions ever since. It turns out Liria has been sharing those visions, something that is a surprise to everyone but Justin…
When secrets surface, Justin is forced to realize that being a genius has a downside. Surrounded by people who want to exploit his talent, he must fight not only for his career and freedom, but perhaps for his life…
OK, wow, you guys. I knew going into this book that it sounded like a very different experience, but I don’t think anything could have really prepared me for this particular ride. I will say that you get more out of the book having read the first one, but it isn’t entirely essential. You know something crazy is happening when two people are sharing visions or dreams, but I simply wasn’t expecting some of the things we find out as the story spirals downward into a crazy maze of real and unreal. I love when a story turns me upside down and inside out like this! I feel much more committed to continuing a book that lacks blandness. Roderick has a unique voice and beautiful style, though it did remind me a bit of a more literary Terry Pratchett considering how laugh-out-loud hilarious it could be at times. I’ve truly never read anything like this and recommend it, though not for the younger crowd as this is very much a New Adult book (i.e. 18 and up)
ELIZABETH RODERICK grew up as a barefoot ruffian on a fruit orchard near Yakima, in the eastern part of Washington State. After weathering the grunge revolution and devolution in Olympia, Washington, Portland, Oregon and Seattle, she recently moved to a small cluster of houses amidst the vineyards of California’s Central Coast.
She earned a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, and worked for many years as a paralegal and translator. She is a musician and songwriter, and has played in many bands, rocking some instruments she doesn’t even know the real names for, but mostly guitar, bass and keyboards.
Elizabeth writes novels for young adults and adults; short stories; and memoir which is way more interesting than it should be. Her stories are about love, death, gang warfare, and madness; her characters tend to be of the type that society generally shuns: addicts, convicts, and the mentally ill. She believes if people get to know these characters in stories and in real life, they’ll find them more likeable than they originally thought.
She applies Hunter S. Thompson’s Gonzo method to fiction writing. It often gets a little heavier than what she had in mind, but she chalks it up to forced consciousness expansion.