LOVE IN THE FOURTH DIMENSION-A Restaurant Tale by P. L. Byrd

Lve in fourth dimension  OK, the book starts off with an angel rambling on about guarding a chick named Mimi.  Of course, you all know how I feel about angels.  Well, after the angel finished his/her monolog, the real story started, and quite frankly, I have NO IDEA what that angel part was doing there.  Seemed like it came from another story and got pasted onto the beginning of this book, because we never hear from the angel again until the very end where there is some more angel twaddle which seems like it was hurriedly tacked on to make sense of that angel poppycock in the beginning.

FULL DISCLOSURE:  I also have no idea where the title of this book came from.  Fourth dimension?  Usually, we consider time to be the fourth dimension, along with the other three:  length, area, and volume.  And although the book takes us through the lives of various characters over the time of a few years, I don’t see it really connecting with the title.  It seems like this book started out to be a woo woo chick-lit-y book and abruptly changed course when we got past the angel and into the story.

But it IS a restaurant story.  I’ll give you that.  It is the story of two couples who do not know each other, but one from each couple comes into contact.  One couple owns a restaurant and bar.

Each couple has an evil spouse,  and a lovely nicey nice spouse.  And interesting, coincidental things happens, just like not in Real Life.  And it is all told in an oddly compelling voice with sentences and phrases that I cannot decide if they are pretentious bullshit drivel, or profound observations.

Her world is simple:  she believes in the Bible, but only in the ‘call to action’ verses; she likes the eye for an eye-type verses best.

And

Every night before bedtime, Ben, dog of Buddha nature, barks to the east of him, to the north of him, to the west of him, and to the south of him, offering up a late night lunar salutation.

There is a lot of clever wordplay, which I am vacillating between thinking it is clever and fun, or  thinking it gets in the way of moving the story along:

Jake feels her attention to their relationship wane again.  Bliss caught a cab to the airport and bought  a one-way ticket to Nowheresville when Jake wasn’t looking.

And

The sacred tonic [wine] takes a swan dive and lands in his heart’s deepest pool.

But sometimes the writing is just plain clever and funny:

Sam Killian enjoys the hard work of staying sober for the second extended time in his long career as a professional sot.

And

The hangings are mundane reproductions that represent muted taste rather than tasteful restraint.

And

Losing weight and gaining it back keeps Cathy busy in her spare time.

It’s not a bad storyline:  girls meet boys, girls snag boys, girls should have paid attention to the red flags;  people do bad things to each other.  People try to survive …. and do.  But it is the writing that is engaging in this book, much more so than the story.

Magic:  To create change, all you have to do is disrupt something; whether the disruption is good or bad is of no concern.  We are both victims and masters of magic.  Presto Chango!

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