Jupiter, an American drifter down on his luck, finds himself wrapped around the finger of a retired French heroin smuggler. Circumstance quickly leads him across the globe searching for clues to the smuggler's secret. He lands headfirst in Nepal, a country still reeling from civil war, and is befriended by Maya, a British diplomat's daughter with connections and attitude. Before Jupiter can get his bearings, Jack, the last remnant of the heroin ring surfaces unexpectedly. On a dimly lit back street of Kathmandu their lives are endangered. Suddenly the trio is on the run, making their way for the remote border town of western Nepal. As they climb higher into the Himalayas, they battle for survival and encounter danger at every turn. Gradually the true meaning of Samsara begins to unfold, becoming more apparent as they toil towards possible safety.
Samsara details the tragic historical events surrounding the resistance movement of the Tibetan Freedom Fighters, a band of brave soldiers who fought against Chinese occupation of Tibet for over fifteen years. Trained in secrecy at US army bases through a covert CIA operation, they eventually established a base in Mustang, an isolated kingdom in the far reaches of Nepal. An abrupt shift in political climate suddenly left the Tibetan guerrillas abandoned. When juxtaposed against current US policy, it echoes an all too familiar precedent. This novel is a commemoration of their remarkable yet heartbreaking tale.
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Fear and Loathing in Nepal
Samsara shines with exotic travels, poignant characters, and tragic humor. Abramczyk’s debut novel is for all those interested in the adventure of finding oneself. I enjoyed this novel greatly. I love to read stories from the perspective of a “fly on the wall” with a special portal into the mind of the protagonist.
This fantastic story seems to have been written with a nod to the familiar ingredients used by other great authors – Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Burroughs and Thompson come to mind. Abramczyk takes these ingredients and delivers his own fantastic brew.
The dynamic between Jupiter, Maya and Jack is at the core of the novel. Abramczky’s gift for dialog and describing human interactions would have created a great story located anywhere in the world; however, the fact that their story takes place in Nepal allows Abramczyk to share his incredible knowledge of a very special part of this planet.
This was one of those books that had me so invested in the characters that I wanted it to go on. As though I knew them and lost touch after the book ended. The journey, inevitably, becomes an inner one for all parties involved, which draws one even deeper into their character, and makes them even more endearing. Having known virtually nothing about the history of Nepal, I also found the book incredibly educational. Can’t wait to see what Abramczyk has in store for us on his next go.
Just finished Samasara!!! What a page burner! Hard to put down, and when you finally do, disengaging is near impossible! I was immediately seduced by Jupiter's witty introspection and constant ability to find himself even deeper in trouble. The characters' complex relationships throughout their adrenaline pumping adventure are tangible, creating a world that is easy to lose yourself in. Throughout the entire experience, Abramczyk consistently educates the reader to all aspects of the region in a discreet and captivating manner. Typically while traveling, I enjoy passing good reads on to fellow adventurers to share the wealth, however I'm finding it especially difficult to part ways with Samsara.