Author: Joshilyn Jackson
Publisher: William Morrow, 2016
The Opposite of Everyone was an absolute experience for me. This was not a casual turn-the-pages read. I was in the middle of the main character, Paula’s, life—in the present and her past. It meant reflecting back on how her earlier experiences brought her to this point. Most of those experiences were not good. It was something you wouldn’t want a child to go through. But, Paula was smart in a variety of ways. She made bad decisions that often had dreadful consequences.
What the Story Is About:
Born in Alabama, Paula Vauss spent the first decade of her life on the road with her free-spirited young mother, Kai, an itinerant storyteller who blended Hindu mythology with southern oral tradition to reinvent their history as they roved. But everything, including Paulaís birth name, Kali Jai, changed when she told a story of her ownóone that landed Kai in prison and Paula in foster care. With the two of them separated, each holding her own secrets, the intense bond they once shared was fractured.
These days, Paula has reincarnated herself as a tough-as-nails divorce attorney with a successful practice in Atlanta. While she hasnít seen Kai in fifteen years, sheís still making payments on that karmic debtóuntil the day her last check is returned in the mail, along with a mystifying note: ìI am going on a journey, Kali. I am going back to my beginning; death is not the end. You will be the end. We will meet again, and there will be new stories. You know how Karma works.
Then Kaiís most treasured secret literally lands on Paulaís doorstep, throwing her life into chaos and transforming her from only child to older sister. Desperate to find her mother before itís too late, Paula sets off on a journey of discovery that will take her back to the past and into the deepest recesses of her heart. With the help of her ex-lover Birdwine, an intrepid and emotionally volatile private eye who still carries a torch for her, this brilliant woman, an expert at wrecking families, now has to figure out how to put one back together ón her own.
You know my number one test for a book is how real the characters are. The Opposite of Everyone is a winner! Paula Voss is as real as a fictional character can get. If she were a part of my regular life, however, I probably wouldn’t like her. But, as a fictional character, she is first class. She’s tough and smart, and always calculating the best advantage for herself, her clients, and the young women she helps via her pro-bono cases.
When the story takes a look at Paula’s very sketchy childhood, my heart aches for her. At a young age she learned to protect herself against people who might hurt or take advantage of her. That includes being able to throw a punch, if necessary. Paula’s life demanded she be a fighter. As an adult she chose the career that fit her skills.
Joshilyn Jackson always delivers a wonderful story that’s crafted to pull the reader into the lives of the characters. She’s following in that great tradition of Southern Storytelling. I’m unable to find fault with this story. I can whole-heartedly recommend this book.
About the Author:
Joshilyn Jackson is the New York Times bestselling author of six previous novels, including gods in Alabama, A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty, and Someone Elseís Love Story. Her books have been translated into a dozen languages. A former actor, she is also an award-winning audiobook narrator. She lives in Decatur, Georgia, with her husband and their two children.
Thanks to the publisher for my copy of the book and to TLC Book Tours for allowing me to be a part of it all. To see other stops on the book tour, visit the schedule here: Joshilyn Jackson Book Tour Schedule