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Reviewed by Arya Fomonyuy for Readers' Favorite
Three Journals by Greg Masters is a masterpiece in the area of journaling, a great work featuring powerful journal entries. No, readers are not offered gripping plots they’d find in thrillers, but the kind of writing that transports them and forces them to look at life through some historic moments in three different locations and times, reflections from a mind with a rare sense of acuity. Readers get a feel of what it was like in Morocco and Europe from 1974-1975; they are thrown into a completely different reality in the East Village of Manhattan from 1977-1978, and finally to the excitement of Mexico in 1985. This is a book that captures the soul and the spirit of the periods it covers with vivid clarity and one cannot help falling in love with the setting, the historical references, the cultural and social commentaries, and the very life throbbing within the narration.
I was pulled in by the author's unique turn of phrase from the very opening of this journal: “Though London is only one day in the past, it is history already. I am three-and-a-half weeks into the trip and all that time, until yesterday, was spent in London.” The reader gets introduced to a thinker, a wanderer, and a critic of his own time. There is a thread, though fragile, that links the author to life and the reader to the work; it is the jovial tone, the liveliness, the spark of joy that is hidden in the disquieting moments of the narrative. The author captures reality in its minutest detail without coming across as boring. Three Journals by Greg Masters presents the musings, the adventures, and the low and high moments of someone who feeds his consciousness by capturing the reality within his milieu in powerful and seductive prose.