Book Review of Parsavagely's "The Third Door"
a blog written by A.S. Damea
"I died. Now I live. But I live within the boundaries of my head. What happens on the outside is beyond my control." The boundaries of Volina's head expand far further than most, spanning two realities, intrinsically linked by a dark room of her mind's creation. She lives life in two bodies. Through the first door, a 16-year-old Czech girl struggling to make it through school with only a drunk father for guidance. Through the second, a 27-year-old woman with unexplained memory loss and the perfect boyfriend, Seb. All she really wants is to finally open the third door, but a heavy hand keeps getting in her way.
The Third Door is the sort of novel that makes you feel lost for at least a week after reading; where you roam your days like a maniac and ponder on someone else's creation. When, you just keep waiting for that someone to give you some damn answers.
I didn't realize how insanely clever this movella was until the very last sentence. Until the very last sentence, all the knowledge the reader is gifted with is two equally melancholy lives are repeatedly led by someone with a 'heavy hand'. This mystical man keeps pushing the two people (who are somehow actually one person) through two doors.
The Third Door is scary, sinister, and definitely not a light read - but it keeps you gripped and thinking. In the end that is what counts.
Perhaps you may feel the apparent unclarity is its downfall, and to be honest, I definitely did at the very start. Because the nature of the novel is so much inferring, it may have helped for the author to write when the POV changed. I can't deny the first few chapters were rather confusing due to this, but I would advise you to keep going; it gets a lot better!
The themes the novel explores are remarkable: the demons within one's head, immigrants, abuse on all kinds of scales, love, drugs, amnesia, and suicide are merely some from a hefty list. I feel that this makes it rather unrealistic (for instance, how does the school not contact home the numerous times Violina is obviously in trouble?). However, maybe the text and mood need a little polishing, but on the whole it does work.
The words as a whole are nice. Though they are nothing I'd compare to Shakespeare, they make sense and they have more highs than lows. My only complaint would be the use of rhetorical questions in the MC’s thoughts.
The paragraphs flow nicely but there is the odd bit that doesn't make sense (what do you expect from a 16 year old?). The novel's star in terms of language and structure is without a doubt its repetition; 'damn' and 'heavy hand' are repeated so much that it becomes almost sarcastic and ironic, which is a literary technique I love to bits.
I can see that what I may make of it as a whole may be different to what you may make of it and proof of this is within the genre the author has given The Third Door. It is classed as a Paranormal/Supernatural but I do not see enough explaining of the paranormal and supernatural aspects (like the strange man with the 'heavy hand' when Violina enters the doors) for it to be a supernatural. I for one interpret the novel's interesting character of the heavy hand as an entire game of the mind, something of one's own imagining and someone's own demise. Perhaps I am wrong. But that is the beauty of The Third Door, there are so many questions unanswered and it is up to you to reread and reread until you can finally speculate your own interpretation.
And the only way to form an opinion on this often strange but undoubtedly clever novel is to read!
4 out of 5
Review first published on Reviewing Dreamer