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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

The Forgetting Time

Narrators: Susan Bennett, David Pittu


Publisher: Macmillan Audio

Publication Date: 2/2/2016

Format: Audio

My Rating: 4 Stars

Noah wants to go home. A seemingly easy request from most four year olds. But as Noah's single-mother, Janie, knows, nothing with Noah is ever easy. One day the pre-school office calls and says Janie needs to come in to talk about Noah, and no, not later, now - and life as she knows it stops.

For Jerome Anderson, life as he knows it has stopped. A deadly diagnosis has made him realize he is approaching the end of his life. His first thought - I'm not finished yet. Once a shining young star in academia, a graduate of Yale and Harvard, a professor of psychology, he threw it all away because of an obsession. Anderson became the laughing stock of his peers, but he didn't care - something had to be going on beyond what anyone could see or comprehend. He spent his life searching for that something else. And with Noah, he thinks he's found it.

Soon Noah, Janie and Anderson will find themselves knocking on the door of a mother whose son has been missing for seven years - and when that door opens, all of their questions will be answered.

Sharon Guskin has written a captivating, thought-provoking novel that explores what we regret in the end of our lives and hope for in the beginning, and everything in between. In equal parts a mystery and a testament to the profound connection between a child and parent, THE FORGETTING TIME marks the debut of a major new talent.

My Review

Sharon Guskin delivers a spellbinding debut THE FORGETTING TIME —a reincarnated spirit of a murdered child –A psychological mystery, with a paranormal/literary twist-- can a piece of us be carried inside someone else? Janie Zimmerman, finds herself pregnant after a brief encounter (one-night stand) with a stranger, and now, Noah is four-years-old, and begins to experience bizarre behavior, even though highly intelligent. The pre-school and Jane are both concerned. He becomes difficult, and is kicked out of school. He is not crazy. He does not like baths and is afraid of water. He speaks of another mother—he wants to go home to his mother? Does he have love within him from another person? She attempts to address this situation by visiting psychiatrists and specialists resulting in draining Janie’s savings and in a tentative diagnosis of early-onset schizophrenia. She is overwhelmed and frustrated. She begins researching specialists, with alternative, scientific, or more "out of the box" thinking. Dr. Jerome Anderson, a psychologist - has been studying young children who seem to recall details from previous lives. Dr. Anderson has his own problems with aphasia, a form of dementia that involves the gradual loss of language. He has written a book, and needs another case for more history to complete. However, he may not have a lot of time left. Soon Noah, Janie, and Anderson will find themselves on a journey--knocking on the door of a mother whose son has been missing for eight years - and when that door opens, all of their questions will be answered. Denise Crawford lost her nine-year-old son six years ago. Her life has been torn apart, as well as her marriage. Another bond between a mother and son. How do the two connect? Quotes and references to: Life Before Life: Children's Memories of Previous Lives by Jim B. Tucker (Author), Ian Stevenson (Foreword) presents the cases in a straightforward way and explores the possibility that consciousness may continue after the brain dies. A provocative and fascinating book that can challenge and ultimately change readers' understandings about life and death. Was reminded a little of Eight Minutes by Lori Reisenbichler, The Other Life by Ellen Meister, The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson. —Reincarnation with a different twist. The belief in past lives and the use of perceptions and knowledge of these to help with one's current life is central to the New Age movement. Sometimes you have to make the best of what you have. You will fall in love with Noah and the desperate need of Dr. Anderson. From despair, sorrow to hope, and love—a mother who wants desperately to understand. Two families drawn together by higher forces for an intriguing twist of paranormal. When lines are blurred between two worlds. Memories, meditation, forgetting, connections, and letting go. Strong bonds between mothers and sons. “Focus on the Love.” I listened to the audiobook —the presentation was mesmerizing and almost hypnotic, performed by Susan Bennett and David Pittu. The novel proposes many thoughts. What happens to us after death is perhaps the greatest mystery of life. One belief is that we reincarnate; that there is life, after life. Beautifully written. Look forward to more from this new author!

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About the Author

SHARON GUSKIN is the author of the debut novel, THE FORGETTING TIME. In addition to writing fiction, she has worked as a writer and producer of award-winning documentary films, including STOLEN and ON MEDITATION. She began exploring the ideas examined in THE FORGETTING TIME when she worked at a refugee camp in Thailand as a young woman and, later, served as a hospice volunteer soon after the birth of her first child. She’s been a fellow at Yaddo, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Blue Mountain Center, and Ragdale, and has degrees from Yale University and the Columbia University School of the Arts.

She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two sons. Read More

Advance Praise

“When I wasn't reading The Forgetting Time, I was itching to return to it. And when I was reading it, my mind was exploding with questions about what's possible, what's probable, and how our lives are caught between the two. Provocative, evocative, and fresh, Guskin's book is an explosive debut.” ―Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author of LEAVING TIME

“Sharon Guskin's debut is the literary equivalent of the sensation you get when, after stargazing from some hillside on a clear night, you're suddenly hit with the terrifying and exhilarating scope of the unknowable. A truly remarkable, dizzying and exquisite page-turner.” ―Téa Obreht, New York Times bestselling author of THE TIGER'S WIFE

“What if what you did mattered more because life happened again and again, consequences unfolding across decades and continents? This question is at the heart of Sharon Guskin's luminous novel. The Forgetting Time is about memory and forgetting, grieving and letting go, and the lengths a mother will go to for her child. It is both a relentlessly paced page-turner and a profound meditation on the meaning of life.” ―Christina Baker Kline, #1 New York Times bestselling author of THE ORPHAN TRAIN

“The Forgetting Time is a magical, wise, page-turner of a novel that brings to mind the early work of Alice Hoffman. I absolutely loved it. A very moving, soulful, and beautifully-made debut.” ―Dani Shapiro, bestselling author of DEVOTION

“A spellbinding ride. Guskin's beautifully rendered and wonderfully told novel explores the mysteries of how we connect to one another in the deepest of ways. What an amazing book.” ―Mary Morris, author of THE JAZZ PALACE

“Sharon Guskin has written a novel that's meticulously crafted without ever losing the heart and soul of the story. It's both a beautiful tale of the bond between a mother and her young son as well as a gripping mystery that asks that universal human question 'were we here before?' Reading The Forgetting Time becomes a personal journey as you try to remember all that you've forgotten.” ―Diane Chamberlain, New York Times bestselling author of THE SILENT SISTER

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