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Every Anxious Wave: Book summary and reviews of Every Anxious Wave by Mo Daviau

Every Anxious Wave

by Mo Daviau

Every Anxious Wave by Mo Daviau X
Every Anxious Wave by Mo Daviau
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About this book

Book Summary

A high-spirited and engaging novel, Every Anxious Wave plays ball with the big questions of where we would go and who we would become if we could rewrite our pasts, as well as how to hold on to love across time.

Good guy Karl Bender is a thirty-something bar owner whose life lacks love and meaning. When he stumbles upon a time-travelling worm hole in his closet, Karl and his best friend Wayne develop a side business selling access to people who want to travel back in time to listen to their favorite bands. It's a pretty ingenious plan, until Karl, intending to send Wayne to 1980, transports him back to 980 instead. Though Wayne sends texts extolling the quality of life in tenth century "Mannahatta," Karl is distraught that he can't bring his friend back.

Enter brilliant, prickly, overweight astrophysicist, Lena Geduldig. Karl and Lena's connection is immediate. While they work on getting Wayne back, Karl and Lena fall in love - with time travel, and each other. Unable to resist meddling with the past, Karl and Lena bounce around time. When Lena ultimately prevents her own long-ago rape, she alters the course of her life and threatens her future with Karl.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"A dark and funny love story that, like its main characters, is much sweeter than it appears on the surface." - Kirkus

"What begins as comic turns much darker…in this melancholy, yet improbably hopeful novel." - Booklist

"Every Anxious Wave gives us the intelligent irreverence of Nick Hornby, the honest romance of Gary Shteyngart, and the swoon-worthy charm of a John Cusack movie, all within a riveting story of lost love, bent time, and rock stars. A delightful, innovative debut." - Rebecca Dinerstein, author of The Sunlit Night

"An absolute kick in the pants to read - if you love rock, bodies, and time travel, this is your ride." - Lidia Yuknavitch, author of The Small Backs of Children

"In this stunning debut, Daviau lays bare all the ways in which dreams and regret are both fueled by love. As much fun as a Melvin's concert, Every Anxious Wave is a romp." - Monica Drake, author of Clown Girl

This information about Every Anxious Wave was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

Reader Reviews

Write your own review

Rory A. (Henderson, NV)

Better than copious caffeine at 6:30 in the morning!
Read "Every Anxious Wave" in disbelief. Read it in amazement. Read it in stunned silence, but please just read it and know that science fiction can be not only still accessible, but also one invigorating head trip that kicks out the usual boundaries of science fiction and hurls us through time just as fiercely as bar owner Karl Bender and his equally fierce and fiercely intelligent astrophysicist girlfriend Lena are hurled as well in their attempt to rescue Karl's eccentric friend Wayne from 980 Mannahatta (instead of ending up in 1980 Manhattan, where Wayne wanted to go to save John Lennon). It's time travel for us, the average you and me, that we wish could be possible.

Rob S

Time Travel Reflections
Every Anxious Wave is the story of slightly off kilter Karl, barkeeper and retired Indie band guitarist; Lena, punk astrophysicist; and Wayne, computer geek, and their pursuit of self-realization and emotional attachment using the vehicle of time travel. The vivid prose thoughtfully captures the pristine beauty of Manhattan Island in the year 980, the eccentric appearance of Lena and the humor of a rock band whose music celebrates the beauty of plus size women. Notwithstanding the laughter that the book sometimes provokes, however, there is a depth and seriousness to the story in its exploration of important themes including the impotence of transformative scientific advancement in controlling the forces of the natural world and the insatiable need of humankind for love and purpose. Most poignantly, the novel speaks to the fragility of each life's trajectory which for Lena was powered by a dysfunctional relationship with an uncaring stepmother and the violence of rape. Using time travel to relive her life without these destructive forces, Lena set herself on a radically different course marked by self fulfillment, professional achievement and the bonds of love, friendship and compassion. The story brings to mind the millions of souls in our world whose lives are defined by poverty, violence and mayhem and causes one to consider the potential of time travel to change the course of these lives.

Every Anxious Wave rewards the reader with laughter, tears and greater insight into our world and the world that might be.

asha

Time travel with a side of indie rock, and beer!
What an ambitious debut novel. Thanks to bookbrowse for this first impressions book to read and review.

I have to say this read has been a crazy trip between music (rock) and science. Ambitious, re configuring of lives by time travel, not through a capsule or a machine, but through worm-holes.

Underlying the love story that spins around the time-space continum, there is this insidious degradation of environment that is unavoidable with modern human life. The survival of the species with its adaptive, evolutionary resilience is pretty awesome.

Not necessarily a big literature high, but definitely a more pop sort of gratification with a pretty good dose of physics and relativism thrown in!

if you love science, indie rock, and beer... go on grab this book!

Barbara

Time Travel witha Punk Twist
Time travel through a personal wormhole in Karl’s closet sets the action in this quirky sort of punk rock novel. Karl’s friend Wayne devises a computer program that allows them to choose the year and place to which they travel, which is, by agreement, only past great rock and roll band performances. But when Karl accidentally send Wayne to 980 Manhattan instead of 1980, Karl must find someone who can help him retrieve his friend. Lena, an astrophysicist grad student from Northwestern answers his ad. She, too, is a punk aficionado, and Karl falls in love with her. They attempt to retrieve Wayne, only to learn he doesn’t want to come back, having fallen in love with the simplicity of the Indian life when he’s at. There are some complications with the time travel that cause Karl to erase Lena’s half-sister, but overall the mechanics of how the wormhole and time travel work are handled in a way that makes them plausible.

Viqui G. (State College, PA)

Every Anxious Wave
This is one of the most original novels I have read in a long time. It was hard to wrap my head around wormholes and time travel, but the character portrayals carried the story and kept me reading. The author fleshed out both Karl and Lena, the "odd couple" in this story so well that I feel like I could recognize them if I met them in a bar (in the present at least!). I also loved that Wayne, Karl's best friend found peace, happiness and acceptance in a totally different world. I strongly recommend this novel to adventuresome readers who are willing to suspend present reality for a possible future reality of time travel and asteroid collisions. I would give this 5 stars except the ending got a little too confusing and funky to follow. In general though, an exciting and original novel!

Kathleen W. (Appleton, WI)

Every Anxious Wave
I have read a fair number of time travel novels, but Every Anxious Wave had some unique features. I especially liked the quirky characters, both main and secondary, who seemed real to me and kept the book from getting too weird. I also liked how the author used Chicago and Seattle locations to ground the story. Only allowing the wormhole to take travelers back to favorite rock concerts was an unexpected twist which I enjoyed. I personally didn't like the author's portrayal of the future, but I guarantee that this book will result in some lively discussions.

...12 more reader reviews

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Author Information

Mo Daviau

Mo Daviau was born in Fresno, California and proclaimed her life goal of publishing a novel at the age of eight. Mo is also a solo performer, having performed at storytelling shows such as Bedpost Confessions and The Soundtrack Series. She is a graduate of Smith College and the Helen Zell Writers' Program at the University of Michigan where Every Anxious Wave won a Hopwood Award. Mo lives in Portland, Oregon. Every Anxious Wave is her first novel. Visit her at modaviau.com

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