Wow- Four main themes, plus what could be a heap of short stories in one of the most innovative and original works I have read in a long time. I couldn't possible pin point this work to a genre, as the metaphysical, the fantasy, the thriller, the speculative, and the literary combine and melt into each other.
This is written on four levels of consciousness- the self disguised, the self as another, the self as omnipresent, and the self in a parallel existence.
If that sounds heavy- it isn't. Really well written books are open to most readers, not just to genre, academic and literary world toffs. This is a brilliant general readers book. I have almost never read a novel in one sitting, I am a very slow and precise line reader, but I came very close to doing so this time. Newland's vision, writing in the first person as the writer Prunella Smith, worked for me on so many different levels. I forget most books within days, sometimes less. I won't forget this one.
Sometimes a clever work like this can help readers escape the myopia of the favoured genre, and in doing so do many favours. Now, obviously one may argue that such books then fall into the trap of never really grabbing anyone. There is no answer to that, but there is no harm in trying something different. Think fusion in cuisine, mixed medium art galleries, market stall shopping, multi-themed gardens, and you will be on a suitably fluid wave to immerse yourself this book.
Once you get going you will get to the end only too soon. Yes, this is compulsive enough to collapse time, but actually it isn't a long book anyway. So don't do that skim-reading thing, but rather make sure you taste all the words as you float through. Listen to the contemplative Buddhist inside you, so as to suppress your own bit of Dita. No, nothing is required to enjoy this, nothing -ist needed at all. As for Dita- read to find out.