Don’t Tell Mama is a tale of love and passion, horror and violence. It has hope buts also sadness - for the characters trapped in their lives and situations they don’t belong in. The tale is often brutal and violent, but the characters are survivors, their souls go on.
I initially found Don’t Tell Mama a complicated book to read and I struggled to keep up with each of the many characters and their complex lives. I desperately wanted to understand how they weaved together. I persevered as it is a beautifully written and poetic book, even if the characters are in often difficult and challenging situations.
The novel reminds me of Angela Carter’s Passion of New Eve, as it challenges gender and sexual stereotypes and notions of what gender is. It also sometimes challenges realism, making you question what reality is.
Eventually the individual characters tales start to make sense and the omnipresent Beyond weaves the stories together.
‘When I was alive, I possessed a beauty that was breathtaking. Here, the whispers around me don’t seem to notice it at all. Here, I am but a fraction, waiting to merge with the others who are still wandering around, trapped in their bodies.’
All the characters in the tale are ultimately Beyond, fractions of the same soul.
I really recommend this book highly, although the themes covered are not for younger readers. It’s a great book to let yourself get lost in amidst the stories of the characters. Though brace yourself for some situations you might not like and sorrow for the characters.