Author: Veronika Carnaby
Rating:4 out of 5
Buy Bohemia from amazon.com
In her debut novel, Veronika Carnaby picks up where the Beat Generation left off. Set in 1960, Bohemia chronicles a group of twenty-somethings who defy the "ideals" of a mid-twentieth century society to seek creative fulfillment. In the process, they spotlight the creative path that artists of all mediums tread, all the while depicting the challenges faced by youth in the decade that changed the world.
This novel fondly put forward the gone by era of hippies through Valene Freed-Val, Emmaline Tovski- Emm, Lester Evans and Jimmy Ray..High spirited Val and Emm are allured by the freshness of rug and tan of Lester and Jimmy taking off with them for a life of hippies leaving behind home and family a...This gang has a motto to live for the moment and never worry about tomorrow,they never settle down in a place , they call a place home till monotony grabs them to move over to another place for a fresh beginning....Their first hub in a dark corner of New york city at "The ladybug" a piano bar,Val and Emm dance while Lester and Jimmy serve drinks... For them the performance gives quiet a adrenaline pump rendering a sense of freedom..Waking up at noon, having breakfast at 2 pm, then leaving for work at 4pm returning past midnight tired drunk on ice cream soda was their life..When monotony drives them banana they take off to Nashua where a sense of peace surround them but somehow the gang fall apart with different thoughts and ideas cris- crossing..Roxford a friend of Val's had kept in touch from her former place pops up taking her with him introducing her into a new world of writing, dance drama music....Moving on to Chicago, the book moves ahead, while Val gets back to her friend Emm sadly finding her to be changed but then what happens at the end well read to find out... The novel narrates us the spirit freaking out , smoke, rock n' roll and an attitude of I don't care...
What clicked me most was the free spirit of the gang that included venturing any place, accepting any odd job and living to the fullest..Though the book appealed to me in the beginning for its freshness, but it somehow fell apart after mid pages..I felt Lester and Jimmy the cool dude were shunned away too rudely by the author.. I liked the way she created an aura of hippies of sixties to early seventies a life of nomads..The slang was just perfect, the nicknames ,start of gas (oh yea!!) were well done..I only wished that the characters were equally developed just as that of Val's because I grew fond of Emm, Lester, Jimmy too..Roxford had his share to play well ...Val was the one who came out well through the novel as a winner..I recommend this book for people who want an easy breezy read of the freaky timeline of hippie...