The Goldberg Variations

The Redemption of the Damned

Fiction - LGBTQ
379 Pages
Reviewed on 01/17/2022
Buy on Amazon

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Free Book Program, which is open to all readers and is completely free. The author will provide you with a free copy of their book in exchange for an honest review. You and the author will discuss what sites you will post your review to and what kind of copy of the book you would like to receive (eBook, PDF, Word, paperback, etc.). To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email.

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Review Exchange Program, which is open to all authors and is completely free. Simply put, you agree to provide an honest review an author's book in exchange for the author doing the same for you. What sites your reviews are posted on (B&N, Amazon, etc.) and whether you send digital (eBook, PDF, Word, etc.) or hard copies of your books to each other for review is up to you. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email, and be sure to describe your book or include a link to your Readers' Favorite review page or Amazon page.

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Donation Program, which was created to help nonprofit and charitable organizations (schools, libraries, convalescent homes, soldier donation programs, etc.) by providing them with free books and to help authors garner more exposure for their work. This author is willing to donate free copies of their book in exchange for reviews (if circumstances allow) and the knowledge that their book is being read and enjoyed. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email. Be sure to tell the author who you are, what organization you are with, how many books you need, how they will be used, and the number of reviews, if any, you would be able to provide.

Author Biography

Jonathan Arnowitz Taylor is an American Born writer and designer living in Bologna, Italy. Recently he has published his first two novels, The Rites of Passage and The Redemption of the Damned, the first two installments of a three-volume series, The Goldberg Variations. He is also a leading designer for creating user-friendly technology and has worked for companies such as Google, Nokia, IBM, and the Dutch design bureau Informaat and most recently Cisco Systems. Jonathan has published two books on User Experience design and is a former editor of Interactions magazine and the author of over 80 articles on design and design management.
This book, The Redemption of the Damned, is the second in the trilogy of The Goldberg Variations following Jamie Goldberg’s coming of age from sexually victimized young child to budding gay youth to finally learning the lessons of life needed to truly emancipate himself. As this book will show, Jonathan’s passions include the human condition, theater, opera, travel, social justice, and communities. All of these passions figure prominently in his writing. Jonathan graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in Theater Arts. A leader in the community of alternative sexuality, he is the title holder of the 2013 International Master/slave education title, which he earned with his now deceased husband Morris Taylor. The Resurrection of the Struggle is Jonathan’s third novel in the The Goldberg Variations series is expected to be published in late 2022.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite

The Goldberg Variations: The Redemption of the Damned by Jonathan Arnowitz Taylor is the story of a young man on the path to self-acceptance. Jamie Goldberg was gay. He was aware of his sexuality and out of the closet, but things were not good. His past wasn’t letting him live his present or look forward to the future. Jamie’s past was filled with horrific sexual abuse and that ruled his present. Depressed, stressed, and plagued with suicidal thoughts, Jamie was desperate to cling to anything or anyone that would give him a respite from the pain. Lost and searching for salvation, he found a group of people who helped him understand the true meaning of family. Suddenly Jamie had friends, shoulders to lean on, a hug when he wanted to cry, and people to share his love for music. But before he could be truly happy, he needed to confront his past, make his peace, and move forward to the future.

Jamie’s character was experiencing self-loathing from the moment the story began. The emotions were running high. I could feel his despair and the way he was desperately grasping for a break. Coming out of the closet was the easy part for Jamie even if his parents asked him never to show his face, even if he was “cured.” He got to study the subject he wanted to at college, and the freedom did wonders for his self-esteem. However, that was all short-lived as coming out was only part of the process, and now that he had freedom, he was often perceived as promiscuous. However, it all worked toward Jamie’s growth as a man who understood himself and understood what it meant to be happy. Music, friendships, relationships, and freedom played a very important role in the story. Freedom, in fact, had multiple facets, and the author explored each of them. The narrative was smooth, fast-paced, and revolved around Jamie’s growth. Jonathan Arnowitz Taylor captured the essence of the early 80s, gave a strong argument to LGBT visibility, and how being singled out could impact a person’s life. The Goldberg Variations was more than just about Jamie’s sexual awakening; it was the story of his coming-of-age in a sense.