Summary and book reviews of Random Acts of Heroic Love by Danny Scheinmann

Random Acts of Heroic Love

by Danny Scheinmann

Random Acts of Heroic Love by Danny Scheinmann X
Random Acts of Heroic Love by Danny Scheinmann
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Published:
    Jan 2009, 400 pages

    Genres

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Vy Armour
Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

Based on real family events, Danny Scheinmann’s novel paints a dramatic portrait of two apparently unconnected epic love stories.

1992: Traveling through South America with his girlfriend, Leo wakes up in a hospital to find his girlfriend is dead. He blames himself for the tragedy and is sucked into a spiral of despair. But a surprising secret leads Leo to discover something that will change his life forever.

1917: Moritz is a POW fugitive, with seven thousand kilometers of the Russian steppes separating him from his first love, whose memory has kept him alive through carnage and captivity. The war may be over, but he now faces a perilous journey and the insecurity of whether his love is still waiting.

1

THE MIND AFTER A SHARP BLOW TO THE HEAD IS LIKE A HOUSE after a hurricane: unrecognizable shards, shreds and splinters.

Fragments of memory lie scattered in the wreckage. All the pieces are there, somewhere – but the landscape is so distorted that, stumbling across them, the brain has no idea what they are or where they are from.

'Where is Eleni?'

'Muerta,' says the doctor.

Leo's eyes close, he is oddly calm watching the bomb hurtle towards him. One last look before he is swept away. He searches his mind and does not recognize the view. A thick fog smothers everything; he can just make out a few faintly familiar shapes. Muerta. He already knows she is dead. At the point of asking he had no idea but when he hears the answer it sounds like the confirmation of a memory he can't seem to bring to his mind. Something lurches out of the blur into sharp focus. Eleni. Droplet brown eyes, rich mane of ebony curls, bundle of electric energy, singing....

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

A visit to Scheinmann's website reveals his inspirations and motivations, as he remarks, "To tell a love story is one thing, (it's all very nice, been done a million times, never fails) but is it possible to go deeper in to the psyche of the reader and move them far more profoundly?" Using his ideas about oral storytelling and the subconscious, he seeks to engage the rational mind of the reader with discussions of quantum physics and scientific phenomenon, and loosen his or her emotional response to the more elusive concepts of love and loss.

I would recommend this book to anyone who has lost a loved one and struggled to make sense of the "Why?"..continued

Full Review (782 words).

This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access, become a member today.

(Reviewed by Vy Armour).

Media Reviews

The Observer
"Scheinmann's debut is tender and insightful, weaving together the lives of two men who have nothing in common except the parallel passions of hope and grieving and their refusal to give up searching.

The Sunday Express
Really is as special as its press suggests ... beautifully told ... an amazingly assured debut.

Kirkus Reviews
While at times predictable and prosaic, the mutually reinforcing narratives ultimately convey debut novelist Scheinmann's message of the redemptive power of love.

Publishers Weekly
Dotted with strange scientific trivia, this beautiful debut novel provides deft moments of poignancy and surprise.

Library Journal - Jim Coan
Absorbing and emotionally engaging, this novel, evidently popular in England, should have broad appeal and is recommended for collections that have a demand for quality historical fiction and moving human interest stories.

Reader Reviews

PDXReader

Beautifully written novel in all respects
The chapters that follow Moritz Daniecki’s WWI exploits are marvelous historical fiction. They’re rich in detail without bogging down. His story is the more entertaining one, something like the story of Odysseus - without the gods and monsters (...   Read More

Write your own review!

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book

Animal Behaviors in Grief and Mating

There have been many observations of elephants grieving.  In Joyce Poole's Coming of Age With Elephants,  Poole illustrates the depth of elephant grieving. A clan of elephants was moving towards newer territory, when suddenly one of the elephants fell over. Soon enough the other elephants noticed that one of their group was in trouble. Arriving by the elephant's side, they realized she was not moving. They attempted to get her up on her feet but to no avail. The elephants then left the dead body and moved on. The next day, elephants returned to mourn and pay homage to the lost friend, family member, clan member and elephant. As observed by Poole, when an elephant walks past a place that a loved one died he/she will ...

This "beyond the book" feature is available to non-members for a limited time. Join today for full access.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

Readalikes Full readalike results are for members only

If you liked Random Acts of Heroic Love, try these:

  • Say Her Name jacket

    Say Her Name

    by Francisco Goldman

    Published 2012

    About this book

    More books by this author

    Celebrated novelist Francisco Goldman married a beautiful young writer named Aura Estrada in the summer of 2005. Two years later she died of a tragic accident. Say Her Name is a love story, a bold inquiry into destiny and accountability, and a tribute to Aura, who she was and who she would have been.

  • A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True jacket

    A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True

    by Brigid Pasulka

    Published 2010

    About this book

    More books by this author

    Whimsical, wise, beautiful, magical, and sometimes even heartbreaking, A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True weaves together two remarkable stories, reimagining half a century of Polish history through the legacy of one unforgettable love affair.

Non-members are limited to two results. Become a member
Search Readalikes again
How we choose readalikes
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Join & Save $10!

Discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten. One-year membership: $29

Find out more


Today's Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: One Night Two Souls Went Walking
    One Night Two Souls Went Walking
    by Ellen Cooney
    In One Night Two Souls Went Walking, we follow a young interfaith chaplain as she carries out her ...
  • Book Jacket: Truthtelling
    Truthtelling
    by Lynne Schwartz
    The word "unsayable" can mean something is too vast to be put into words. Alternatively, it can ...
  • Book Jacket: The Book Collectors
    The Book Collectors
    by Delphine Minoui
    About halfway through The Book Collectors, I was disappointed. I came into the book with a ...
  • Book Jacket: Blue Sky Kingdom
    Blue Sky Kingdom
    by Bruce Kirkby
    Who hasn't dreamed of escaping all of the trappings of today's modern life and finding a secluded, ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    The Blind Light
    by Stuart Evers

    A multigenerational story about two families bound together by the tides of history.

    Reader Reviews
Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
The Exiles
by Christina Baker Kline
The author of Orphan Train returns with an ambitious, emotionally resonant historical novel.
Win This Book!
Win Jack

Return to Gilead with Jack, the instant New York Times bestseller

Enter to win Marilynne Robinson's latest novel in her classic series.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

I G I O Ear A O T O

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.