A review by Joey Madia
I have to say up front: I am a big fan of Sharon Heath’s writing—especially her characters, such as the brilliant but troubled eponymous lead in the Fleur trilogy (also published by Thomas-Jacob). Heath, a certified Jungian analyst, “writes fiction and non-fiction exploring the inter-play of science and spirit, politics and pop culture.” Creating at the intersection of perceived dichotomies such as these is very Jungian, alchemical, shamanic, and above all, necessary.
Some books provide an escape hatch away from the mounting troubles of a world in crisis. And there are plenty of reasons to seek escape. This past week, another pair of factors—economics and health—ramped up their interplay with the increase in Coronavirus cases and wild gyrations in the Stock Market. (The fact that we talk about economics and health as closely linked because of greedy pharmaceutical and insurance companies and a complicit AMA is a national embarrassment.)
Heath’s books, however, engage us further into the world’s troubles, as she ups the stakes on a macro level while pulling us in with her characters on the micro level.
If literature has real value for the soul, this is it.
Although there are many thematic overlaps with the Fleur trilogy and Chasing Eve, it is the unique features of the latter that I am going to concentrate on here.
Chasing Eve takes place in Los Angeles, a geography with which Heath is obviously intimately familiar. LA is a complex intermix of racial and religious dichotomies, of extravagant wealth and fame, and abject poverty and obscurity within the city’s large population of homeless. In Chasing Eve we encounter those suffering from drug addiction, AIDS, and the pains of basic survival co-existing with doctors, college professors, and a Hollywood public relations specialist whose bad behavior and at times eye-opening coldness to what’s going on around them set the book’s thematic tone. Continue reading