Wave by Sonali Deraniyagala
Reviewed by Lydia Nolan
©January 8, 2023
This novel is a true story, it is a devastatingly heart wrenching journey of loss and love beyond our wildest imagination. It is hard to believe people in other places from our own lives might be suffering so severely to where their therapist even encourages them to write a true narrative about it, publish it, and see its living form in a reactive state to impact so many people in the world and to caution them in the concept of loving truly and deeply while we can, those that may disappear in an instant. In spite of the fact it will never really heal the author, only remind her endearingly of those who are gone, she offers us an account of humanity in all its pockets of emotions: weakness, strength and resilience, though she will most likely be a lasting wounded soul, to which I must ask; how can we ever be shallow about life after such an account?
Beginning with the tragedy, the author gives us a blow-by-blow account of what it is to go through first a traumatic and frightening event, all the stages of its devastation, the shock, the unrealized guilt that creates coercive self-destructive behaviors, and finally toward a semblance of healing through the stages of grief that never really takes the pain away only allays it to some extent; she just learns how to manage that excruciating history.
The author’s account gave me a new outlook on what it must be like to truly experience the instant tearing away of a life we take for granted because we never suspect it can change in an instant. And not only that. I look at those I love, those I don’t know, those I even don’t care much for, and I see all these lives differently, especially those I love. I relish the interaction with my loved ones, and keep the memories of our interactions in my heart, for we never know when we might experience such a change—such a devastating change—as Sonali’s, in our own future.
I have always been drawn to psychology and this narrative will give psych enthusiasts something to ponder. I am inspired to study the stages of grief and its final stages; the outcome, acceptance, and compartmental life to function, because of this book. Read it to the end, you will learn something and appreciate yours and every life around you. You will likely read her bio of how she is now fairing, and you will see how such an event can change a person radically.