Review: Heaven And Other Zip Codes Examines The Complexities Of Marital Relationships

Review: Heaven And Other Zip Codes Examines The Complexities Of Marital Relationships

Cailler’s newest Heaven and Other Zip Codes is one of those novels that I simply couldn’t put down. I devoured the whole book in one day, moving from one room to another, from one chair to the sofa, and back. I was enchanted with the characters and story and loved every bit of it. It’s a finely conceived and carefully crafted novel, and I believe we’ll see this story on the big screen.

A writer of poetry, prose, and even children’s literature, Cailler is well-published in literary magazines and journals and has received much recognition including being a finalist for Glimmer Train, the New Rivers Press American Fiction Prize, and Raymond Carver Short Story Award. He is also a recent recipient of a Short Story American Prize for Short Fiction. All these recognitions are richly deserved. Heaven and Other Zip Codes is his first novel and sixth book.

Heaven and Other Zip Codes deals with marital relationships and their complexities (unfaithfulness, divorce, gender roles, etc.), but the narrative is about so much more. Protagonist Emerson Toffler seems an older and more soulful Holden Caulfield and befriends his pupil Theo, becoming even a father figure and friend for him.  Toffler also has a relationship with a known retiree and artist, perhaps a mother figure for him, and as the wise old woman character, she opens doors for him. In a way, the novel is a guide about how to live.

Cailler’s Heaven and Other Zip Codes is a winner, a must read, and poised for recognition. As I wrote in a blurb, there are lows “as deep as the Titanic’s stemware…and ups Kilimanjaro-like”, and readers will fall in love with this page-turning, brilliant novel. They will fall in love with the characters, rooting for them to be successful and hoping they’ll find love and be happy, and readers will also drink in the sweeping scenes of Catalina Island and other areas of California. Cailler is destined for an award with this newest post-modern masterpiece.

Niles Reddick
Niles Reddick
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HEAVEN AND OTHER ZIP CODES by Mathieu Cailler