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Nakamura Reality

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  31 ratings  ·  17 reviews
Absenting himself for a brief intimacy with a former girlfriend, Hugh Mcpherson leaves his surfing obsessed sons on an isolated California beach. When he returns, the eleven-year-old twins have vanished. A ferocious riptide has swept Takumi and Hitoshi out to sea, their bodies unrecovered.

Devastated by the loss, Hugh and his Japanese wife Setsuko divorce. Severing all tie
Hardcover, First, 272 pages
Published February 28th 2016 by The Permanent Press
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Alex Hanna's boyfriend Kyle. Kyle was enraged that Hanna had slept with Hugh.
Alex The male student, Aaron, had turned in a piece of fiction to his teacher Hugh that involved a man hiding from the Mexican Mafia. Hugh innocently gave…moreThe male student, Aaron, had turned in a piece of fiction to his teacher Hugh that involved a man hiding from the Mexican Mafia. Hugh innocently gave a copy of the fiction to another student who turned out to have connections to the Mexican Mafia. Aaron's story wasn't fiction and the man in the story was his grandfather. So Hugh had put Aaron's grandfather in jeopardy. Aaron's revenge was to set Hugh up as someone who took sexually explicit photographs of Aaaron's girlfriend Anna.(less)

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Average rating 3.90  · 
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Elyse (retired from reviewing/semi hiatus) Walters
This is my first book I've read by Alex Austin....Southern California guy!
A journalist, teacher, and novelist, Alex has a unique style of storytelling.
This wasn't a fast read for me. The uniqueness slowed me down. Lovely writing had me pause. Other times I read slow because I wasn't sure I understood something. ( had to read it again).
The dialogue is very strong..( mysterious, intriguing, and entertaining).

There is a story within a story.....which was 'at times' confusing to me. The story 'w
Jul 06, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: novel
I received this book from the author and my GR friend Alex Austin. I enjoy reading this book. Before I read it, by its name I thought it must be multi genre book, now I finish it and be sure about it. It's hard to categorize this book; it does neither complete real, nor surreal. Of course it is not in magic real category. I think the author has written this book in real genre but he also has added suspense element. I cannot say it surreal. It can be suspense even sometime it seems it hasn't good ...more
Oct 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, thriller
I received a free e-ARC of this book in exchange for a honest review.

It has taken me quite some time to review this book, for different reasons. Firstly, because real life can sometime take its toll. But also because I don't really know where to start with my review.

Nakamura Reality is an interesting book. It's a nice thriller, but also more than that. While trying to unravel the mystery along with the characters, the reader also takes a plunge into their psyche, with all the myste
Jan 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Built into that mysterious space between fairytale, myth and gritty authenticity, Alex Austin’s Nakamura Reality is achingly real, hauntingly surreal, and vividly imaginative. It’s a wonderful tale of love lost, loveless loss, and fiction’s cruel machinations, where family ties tear and weave into a literary tapestry, and a wounded father works his way through the chess game of a broken life.

Beautifully descriptive, the author’s writing is as sure and convincing in its depiction of s
Kara Kelley
Oct 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A story so gripping and satisfyingly complex, it'll leave you thinking about it long after the last page. Skillfully crafted with rich prose and characters, you'll find yourself sympathizing with the main character as you too question the sometimes fine line between sobering reality and heart wrenching allusion. Austin masterfully weaves his characters into a spellbinding world of gritty emotions and a journey that is both addicting and wondrous.
Tom Johnson
Sep 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
“Will Test The Reader’s Imagination”

Leaving his sons unattended on the beach, Hugh McPherson returns to find them missing, believed to have been swept away while surfing in the ocean. The loss of his sons breaks up his marriage with his Japanese wife, Setsuko. She returns to Japan, leaving Hugh to suffer his loss alone. Ten years later he decides to join his sons, swimming into the sea to die, but a vision of his two boys makes him see other possibilities. But when chance presents it
Apr 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
"We have lingered in the chambers of the sea," famously ends T. S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock. "By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown / Till human voices wake us, and we drown." There's a lot of Eliotic "death by water" imagery in this beautifully written, intricately structured puzzle-novel. That's appropriate because submersion in water hasn't always been a literal threat of drowning, but a metaphor for the porous borders between perception and reality, between the ...more
Lee Parker
Sep 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I received a copy of this for free through Goodreads First Reads

This was a wonderfully written thriller. The only reason I gave it 4 stars instead of 5 is that I still, after finishing, am still not quite sure exactly what happened. But that doesn't at all detract from my enjoyment of the novel. Its certainly worth a reread, as I'm sure that I missed some things during my first read through.
Oct 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
I am not entirely sure what to think about this book. I will have to reread it so that I can be certain exactly what happened. It is well written though so there's that. As so often happens in life, this character is both a victim and a victimizer. His crimes are large and small as are the crimes committed against him. So for now, 4 stars.
Nov 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
The author provided a copy of this book for review.

Alex Austin’s novel, Nakamura Reality, is difficult to place in a particular genre or style because he’s incorporated so many ideas and levels for the reader to contemplate. Hugh McPherson, an American teaching English classes in Tokyo, begins an affair with one of his students, Setsuko. Love blossoms and they marry, giving birth to twin sons, Takumi and Hitoshi. Setsuko’s father, Kazuki Ono, is a famous Japanese novelist who i
Feb 22, 2016 rated it liked it
There is a nugget of a story, a mystery, here but so many facets that don't fit together. Hugh McPherson's two sons went missing twelve years ago while surfing at a California beach, while Hugh stepped away for a short while (for a liaison? This seems like only a suggestion in the prolog. If this is a motivating factor for actions against Hugh, it waits too long to be confirmed in the story.) While Hugh grieves and continues his 12- year search for lost twins, Takumi and Hitoshi, his Japanese ex ...more
Nick Rossi
connection between humanity that intrinsically links us all to one another.

In "Nakamura Reality", loss and tragedy quickly strike in the life of Hugh McPherson. His twin sons vanish into the ocean. Fervent surfers, the boys succumb to the immense powers of the sea and meet their demise. Hugh and his wife, Setsuko, cannot weather life together with the loss of their sons. Soon divorcing, the Setsuko chooses to leave her american life behind her and moves back to Japan with her writer-
A.S. McGowan
Dec 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommended to A.S. by: Alex Austin
I was sent a physical copy of this book by the author. I spent a couple days reading this book from beginning to end. I will be trying my best to give my honest review without any spoilers. First off this book is not a book one can read casually or skim through. To do so would mean missing the intricate details within the story that are vital to the story. This book will challenge you and your perceptions the same way as the great classics such as Wuthering Heights. Yes I do place this book righ ...more
Oct 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The word that comes to mind when describing this book is exquisite. A man has lost his twin sons, his "little rippers" to the surf, apparently during a moment when he was having an assignation with an old girlfriend. The story starts twelve years later and follows the man, Hugh MacPherson, whose life is in ruins. He attempts suicide by drowning but is saved, and instead comes to wonder if there wasn't a mysterious boat on the water that day. Perhaps his boys are still alive. The book chronicles ...more
Feb 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
A multi-layered story with a novel-within-a-novel that mirrors the quest of the main character. A good dose of emotion drives the story forward as he searches for his sons, who apparently drowned. As the story progresses, hints surface that the boys may still live. The Japanese culture is strongly featured. For readers who love puzzles or surprising plots, this is a great book.
Feb 01, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars
Nov 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway. Good story
Geoff Orton
rated it it was ok
Jun 30, 2016
J C Mitchinson
rated it really liked it
Feb 01, 2017
Diane Baker
rated it it was amazing
Oct 01, 2016
rated it it was amazing
Feb 26, 2016
Cameron Draughn
rated it did not like it
Feb 16, 2017
rated it liked it
Oct 30, 2016
Geoffrey Skinner
rated it really liked it
May 03, 2016
Christopher Wilsher
rated it it was amazing
Aug 11, 2017
rated it really liked it
Mar 29, 2016
rated it it was amazing
Nov 12, 2016
Jim Amos
rated it really liked it
Apr 30, 2016
Chris T
rated it liked it
Jun 04, 2019
Jackie Morris
rated it really liked it
Mar 17, 2016
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Mystery Lovers!: This topic has been closed to new comments. Publisher's Weekly Reviews Nakamura Reality 1 10 Nov 03, 2015 03:03PM  

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I'm a Los Angeles-based journalist and teacher. My novel Nakamura Reality will be published by Permanent Press [On a shoestring turning out literary gems"--The New York Times] in February 2016. The following are links to some reviews, interviews and my published stories:

Publishers Weekly Starred Review of Nakamura Reality

Better Beta Reads Interview

I'm a Los Angeles-based journalist and teacher. My novel Nakamura Reality will be published by Permanent Press [On a shoestring turning out literary gems"--The New York Times] in February 2016. The following are links to some reviews, interviews and my published stories:

Publishers Weekly Starred Review of Nakamura Reality

Better Beta Reads Interview


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