Thanks to Ash, I had the chance to look through the book of the upcoming movie, Turn Left, Turn Right.
Written by Jimmy Liao, it’s a simple story book, told through beautiful water paintings done by Liao himself. Initially, I had thought that the storyline was interesting, without reading the book. It tells of how a man and a woman who, although neighbours, never met each other because one always turns left and the other, right. Hence, they never knew of each other’s existence. And it is only through a series of events that they finally meet and fall in love.
The premise of fate is tempting enough. And now that I have read the book, I am truly a fan of Liao and the book.
Sure, one could always dismiss it as romantic fluff. And I do not deny the fact that the idea behind the book is a romantic one. But the distinction between Liao and other romance writers is that he dishes out simple ideas, with a simple plot without the heavy use of soppiness that many writers are prone to using. His prose is clean and pure, almost like dew glistening in the sunlight. It’s almost sheer poetry, like looking up into the sky when the sun is setting, with purples and oranges blending perfectly. Reading this book is like drinking a good cup of tea – the taste is light without being cloying, it goes down smooth and easy.
This book is thought-provoking without dumping philosophical crap on the reader. It makes you wonder about life, about fate, about the person you could meet or the person who might be waiting for you, just as you might be waiting for him. And since in reality, life is not rosy and nothing ever goes perfect, his book reflects that too.
Could the person you bumped into today be the one who’s meant for you?
Could the one you are waiting for be just right next to you?
In this busy, bustling city, sentimentality is a flaw and not a virtue. The idea of fate is no longer applicable, humans slip in and out of the dating game as often as the sun rises everyday.
I believed in fate. And still do, actually. But after getting burnt, the idea of fate and meeting that one person who’s meant for me seems further and further away. I don’t want to play this game anymore, I don’t want to live on false hopes and in castle dreams anymore.
But this book is different. It doesn’t tell you that love comes easy to everyone, that love is all happiness and no pain. It tells you, gently, that sometimes, you need to wait patiently for love to arrive. That it comes unexpectedly. That if you keep willing for something to happen, it won’t but once you stop hoping for it, it will come to you soon enough and in life’s little ways. That love can hurt and can leave one in melancholia.
That perhaps, just perhaps, if you try walking in another direction, you might just get a surprise.