Sunday, October 27, 2019

Review: The Museum of Lost Love by Gary Barker

Title: The Museum of Lost Love
Author: Gary Barker
Format: Paperback
Publisher: World Editions
Publish Date: October 1, 2019
Source: PR

What’s the Story?:

Katia and Goran are in love. Tyler is in therapy. On a summer trip to Zagreb, the couple discover an unusual museum—a museum that displays mementos of broken relationships. Inside, Goran stumbles upon an exhibit that seems to be addressed to him, from a girl he met in a Sarajevo refugee camp at age fourteen. What follows is a whirlwind summer of reconnecting with lost pasts: Goran confronts the youth he lost during the Yugoslav Wars, Katia heads to Brazil to find her roots, and Afghanistan veteran Tyler pours out his soul. Set against alternating backdrops of violent circumstances, this novel is a soulful testament to the uncontainable flourishing of the human heart.

My Two Cents:

“The Museum of Lost Love” is a love story and being vulnerable enough to let love in even when it seems like love will just bite you back. This is a story about Katie, a woman who knows little of her background, and Goran, who constantly seems to be running from his background and from the horrific experiences that he had as a young child during the Yugoslav Wars. It’s also the story of Tyler, a veteran of the Afghanistan War, who is back home and very much still trying to get used to what life looks like after war where things may be even more difficult.

I really enjoyed this book. It was interesting to see how the stories intertwine with each other. They mesh together in some really unexpected ways. I was definitely drawn to both stories. We get to see Katia and Goran grapple with their pasts in order to define their futures. We see Tyler figure out what really matters when it comes to his son and how they move together as a family.

The writing of the book is really good. I loved how the story lines were interspersed with stories from the Museum of Lost Love. These little vignettes cover all sorts of different story lines and some of them are really poignant. I was amazed with how much the author was able to pack into such a small amount of space.  The vignettes cover all different  types of love.  The author is at his best when he’s showing the inner motivations of each character. All the characters feel very real and the mauIn characters are ones I will be thinking about for a long time!


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