Tuesday, 10 February 2015
Review: Transcendence by Shay Savage
Series: N/A - Standalone
Publication Date: 13th February 2014
It’s said that women and men are from two different planets when it comes to communication, but how can they overcome the obstacles of prehistoric times when one of them simply doesn’t have the ability to comprehend language?
Ehd’s a caveman living on his own in a harsh wilderness. He’s strong and intelligent, but completely alone. When he finds a beautiful young woman in his pit trap, it’s obvious to him that she is meant to be his mate. He doesn’t know where she came from; she’s wearing some pretty odd clothing, and she makes a lot of noises with her mouth that give him a headache. Still, he’s determined to fulfill his purpose in life – provide for her, protect her, and put a baby in her.
Elizabeth doesn’t know where she is or exactly how she got there. She’s confused and distressed by her predicament, and there’s a caveman hauling her back to his cavehome. She’s not at all interested in Ehd’s primitive advances, and she just can’t seem to get him to listen. No matter what she tries, getting her point across to this primitive, but beautiful, man is a constant – and often hilarious – struggle.
With only each other for company, they must rely on one another to fight the dangers of the wild and prepare for the winter months. As they struggle to coexist, theirs becomes a love story that transcends language and time.
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
This is quite possibly the strangest book I have ever read.
Why is it strange you ask?
Well, lets start with the fact it is told from the POV of a caveman - yes, a caveman - called Ehd.
Ehd cannot speak or understand the spoken language. His every thought and instinct is geared towards survival: food, shelter and mating.
One day Ehd finds a girl and decides - as you do - he is going to keep her and she'll be his mate.
Ehd doesn't know, but we work out quickly through his thoughts, is that she isn't from Ehd's time. She is from ours.
So, strange point number two crops up in that this book contains no conversation, because even though "Beh" can speak, Ehd can't understand, so we never know what she is saying unless we can work it out through Ehd. It's wonderful seeing two people learn to talk so fluently without words.
Ehd is a lovely lovely man. He takes Beh as his mate through lack of options but he is attracted to her and he grows to love her so much! She isn't just "his breeder," she is his everything and Beh proves, by the end, that Ehd is her everything too.
You follow this couple through every high and low, from what I guess to be their teens through to old age and death. You witness their struggles and their triumphs. Their fear and happiness. Their joy and agony. You see their children born and how their life changes. It is a gorgeous tale.
The time travelling aspect is a non-issue all things considered. It doesn't come up until the last quarter and it is something Ehd can't understand, therefore by design or by fault it has to be a non-issue to you as the reader.
The epilogue brought a little tear to my eye and I turned the last page with a smile.
My only grumble would be that it gets a bit repetitive at times but, y'know, CAVEMAN. Since survival and pro-creation are his only goals you expect a level of repetitiveness.
It's hard finding a story that's truly original sometimes and this is definitely a truly original tale.
It's weird, but it was wonderful.