What is more is that there are so many tantalizing and complex undercurrents that you will enjoy wondering what is exactly going on here? In addition, Melnik has created a fully believable protagonist who you can't help liking and admiring for her down-to-earth attitudes and take on life. His ability to reveal her character with tiny gestures and poignant reflection adds to her legitimacy. There is a great deal in this book to ponder over and it should make for some very interesting dinner table conversations.
- by Norm Goldman editor of "Bookpleasures.com"
Life is neither malicious nor kind. It simply doesn't care.
The story in To Your Own Self Be True centers on the life of Kaela Ladd, whose father taught her to think first with reason, as he taught her younger sister, Lainey. He told his daughters to question everything, explaining that nothing can be learned, if they close their eyes. Lainey had no trouble accepting what others believe, but Kaela became almost obsessed about the absurdities advanced by others.
As she grew up, Kaela’s talent in math led her to the study of physics. Forever in her books, she fosters just a few friendships at school, but even then never felt that she really fit in. There were a handful of disastrous dates. Two factors always got in the way. The first was that she preferred to be alone rather than suffer through small talk. The second was being self conscious about the quirks she realized she had.
Then Kaela’s father shares a secret with her about an extraordinary event that changed his very existence some fifteen years earlier. The most reasonable man she had ever known told her the most extraordinary thing she’d ever heard. At the very least, she was certain her father believed it was true.
It is the year 2021, Kaela is twenty-three years old, and after her internship in physics she’s offered a position at SciLab, a preeminent science facility not far from where she grew up. The job offer was too desirable to turn down, and she could continue her doctorate in evening sessions. She’s successful, but like the rest of us, she struggles to discover what really makes us happy.
She was taught many lessons in moral principles growing up, but it’s rare that the most profound of them would be put to the test. A convergence of events gives her father the opportunity to teach her one of the greatest lessons of all.
To Your Own Self Be True is an existential story about a woman who looks at life from a different perspective than most. She challenges us to think of a world where people of reason are given a chance to influence the course of history as much as those of faith.
- Ray Melnik
Cover of To Your Own Self Be True
See below for additional links and information.
Special thanks to Joann Horai for her intrinsic editing.
Thanks to Ira Blutreich for proofreading.
Thanks to Edward Hayman for final proofreading and advice.
Special thanks to Danielle Shaw who posed as Kaela for the novel front cover art.
Front cover image of Kaela (Danielle) was taken by Agenda, London, U.K.
Back cover image of the author was taken by ntech media design at The Landmark Oriental Hotel, Hong Kong.
Thanks to Peter Gabriel for inspiration gained from the lyrics to the song "IT", in the collection of works, "The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway" from the music group Genesis.
To Brian Greene for his clever illustration of string theory.
To Leonard Susskind for his clear view of reality.
On To Your Own Self Be True's front cover, there's a hidden image!