The Illusion of Separateness by Simon Van Booy
A Novel

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...Mr. Van Booy strives to show the interior experience of each individual but also the wider, lingering effects of our actions.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

In The Illusion of Separateness, award-winning author Simon Van Booy tells a harrowing and enchanting story of how one man’s act of mercy during World War II changed the lives of strangers, and how they each discover the astonishing truth of their connection.
 
Whether they are pursued by Nazi soldiers, old age, shame, deformity, disease, or regret, the characters in this utterly compelling novel discover in their, darkest moments of fear and isolation that they are not alone, that they were never alone, that every human being is a link in an unseen chain.

The Illusion of Separateness intertwines the stories of unique and compelling characters who—through seemingly random acts of selflessness—discover the vital parts they have played in each other’s lives.

 

About Simon Van Booy

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Simon Van Booy grew up in rural Wales. He is the author of The Secret Lives of People in Love and Love Begins in Winter, which won the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. He is the editor of three philosophy books, titled Why We Fight, Why We Need Love, and Why Our Decisions Don’t Matter, and his essays have appeared in the New York Times, The Daily Telegraph, and The Guardian, and on NPR. He lives in New York City, where he teaches at the School of Visual Arts and is involved in the Rutgers Early College Humanities program for young adults living in underserved communities. He was a finalist for the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise, and his work has been translated into thirteen different languages.
 
Published June 11, 2013 by Harper. 229 pages
Genres: History, War, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Illusion of Separateness
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Chris Power on Aug 09 2013

The book's best sections are those that describe the ordeal of an American airman who has crash-landed in France. The writing here is more direct, less admiring of itself, and provides respite from the dominant elegiac tone.

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WSJ online

Good
Reviewed by JESSICA LAKSO on Jul 12 2013

...Mr. Van Booy strives to show the interior experience of each individual but also the wider, lingering effects of our actions.

Read Full Review of The Illusion of Separateness:... | See more reviews from WSJ online

Kirkus

Above average
on Jun 09 2013

...the overall sense is that Van Booy is foregrounding a we’re-all-in-this-together theme that many novelists needlessly obscure.

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Reader Rating for The Illusion of Separateness
81%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 181 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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