This bonus is an excerpt from my novel, Incarnation and a Cliff Notes-style cheat sheet below in the notes. The book follows a journalist, an actor, a writer, and a programmer whose dreams and desires play out together on the global stage, again and again. Each time, they find meaning as they spin on life's mysterious wheel of fortune.
Incarnation is, deliberately, a bit of a puzzle. For readers who linger with books until their memory gets fuzzy, or those who read the last page of a book first, or who like having the solution to a crossword puzzle handy, the following cheat sheet notes the relationships and pivotal moments of the incarnations in the novel. (Below, I include the cheat sheet from the beginning of the book to the point we get to in this excerpt. The whole cheat sheet is here.)
Chapter One: Ryoko and Joey
- Joseph Jones is married to Ryoko. Lucy is married to Billy.
- Joseph describes the pivotal moment as a teenager when he met Ryoko. She nicknamed him Joey Coe, which he ultimately uses as his stage name in this, and similar incarnations.
- Krishna is a teenager in India. He describes the pivotal moment involving Kamalita when he must choose whether to defy his father. In the first incarnation described, he honors his father’s wishes, takes over the family business, and stays in India. He marries Kamalita. At the age of 65, Krishna meets an odd yogi who tells him that he is is to go to America. He slips on the steps beside the Ganges, and dies.
- In another incarnation, he is outraged at the pivotal moment with Kamalita and becomes estranged from his father. He moves to America, where he studies computer programming.
Chapter Two: Ryoko and Krishna
- In another incarnation, Joseph acts differently in the pivotal moment when he meets Ryoko. They do not become a couple, as they did in Chapter One.
- In still another incarnation, Joseph, as a young boy, is a pawn in the marital strife of his parents. His mother is having an affair with Rusty, who calls Joseph, “Jacquot.” She and Rusty move, with Jacquot, to France.
- Ryoko, as a young journalist, goes to France for a vacation — and to fish for a story. She meets Jacquot, who is now a film director. They have a romance.
Book and audio © 2016–2018 Peter Ferko