When Dawn meets Stavros in the casino, everything seems possible: the favor of Fortune, love, inspiration. However, both hide their true face and both hide secrets. In every rotation of the roulette they intensely experience all their passions; chasing the big win, they will experience a series of apocalyptic Defeats. They will both bet at each other’s hidden side, experimenting with their own existence and taking the riskiest bet
The game goes on, the roulette is spinning and the stakes are high. Who’s the loser and who’s the winner?
I must firstly address that this book is not an easy read and tackling a book such as this will either leave you completely drained or thoroughly enlightened! Although a fictional romance, it can also be said that this book is embedded, equally so, in philosophical, anthropological and superstitious theory. It essentially seems to go to the very core of all that is debated about the cold and ugly nature of humans and the world they inhabit.
Consequently this book is able to provide not only a love story with enough suspense to keep you reading on, it is also able to stimulate the mind and question things about life that you never thought to notice before.
Dawn is the main character in this story, a thirty-six year old writer who travels back to Greece after living in London for eighteen years, in order to allow her creative juices to flow better when writing. She immediately becomes trapped into the exciting and dangerous world of gambling of casino by the mystery that is Stavros.
Stavros is charming and dominant but he is also everything that is bad for Dawn. Even from their first meeting, Dawn and Stavros's relationship is clouded by gambling's chaotic, deceptive and abusive nature. They become each other's drug and can't seem to break free from one another even when their worlds become an entangled mess of destruction where it is uncertain how it will finally end.
Reading about the different twists and turns in Dawn and Stavros's relationship was so fascinating. My eyes became almost glued to every page because you never knew what was going to happen at any given moment between them. But although I was gripped to this story, as I read on, I was deeply disappointed with how the author's writing style progressed.
In Dawn's own words, this book was written in a 'very haphazard and non-systematic way'. The story was never able to flow in a coherent manner because the author kept on switching between scenes and cutting scenes off abruptly without warning.
Sometimes I had to re-read entire paragraphs over and over again, to surmise whether I was still in the same scene or a completely new one. For example one minute Dawn would be arguing with Stavros and the next minute their making love with no explanation of how they made up. Similarly Dawn would be doing or thinking about something particularly interesting and then out of nowhere she would completely change her line of thought or action.
The author's seeming inability to follow through with scenes in cohesion to a point where it made sense, was thus incredibly frustrating and bewildering.
What also added to my confusion was that the author used the word 'she' a lot, sometimes in reference to Dawn, Celia or any another women in the story and it became increasingly excruciating trying to work out who the author was referring to. I didn't understand why she just couldn't call them by their name for clarity.