The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley is a captivating story about a group of very different strangers brought together by the simple idea of an old artist.
Julian, still grieving the loss of his wife who passed away 15 years ago and consumed by the loneliness in his life, is inspired to share a glimpse into his life in a green notebook. He knows that our lives are not always what we make them out to be, and the challenge in the notebook is to tell the truth.
The notebook is called The Authenticity Project, and he leaves it in a café hoping the next person to find it will leave their own story behind in the journal and then pass it on to someone else. In this way we meet Monica, the owner of a café, who has her own secrets which she shares in the journal which then lands with Hazard, a man battling his own demons, as the journey of self-reflection and brutal honesty continues.
But what starts as a simple notebook evolves into something much bigger. We are drawn into a journey where all the character’s stories are now woven together…stories of sadness, stories of addiction and stories of loneliness and longing. You will get to know these characters intimately, celebrating their wins and crying at their losses as the story blossoms.
The Authenticity Project is an inspiring idea, with real lessons to be learnt about appearances and everything not always being what is seems. There is even a candid discussion about authenticity in the blogging sphere. Above all The Authenticity Project reminds us to be kind always, because the reality is that some people are fighting a battle that you know nothing about. It speaks of the power of friendship and ultimately of forgiveness too. It also leaves us with the question about what truth we would share if we had to write in The Authenticity Project.
The Authenticity Project is available from bookstores and online retailers for a recommended retail price of R290.
Thanks to Penguin Random House for sharing this inspirational book with me.