Reviews

"Great book--Really a page turner, the writer made me feel like if I was there! As I was finishing the book I realize that was it, and I wish the last sentence I read was that Zemi was there with his dad! I am still hopeful!!!"--Maribel V. Murphy"

"Captivating!  A must read when you want an interesting inner look at the thoughts of a father as he longs and yearns for his son's physical and emotional presence. The author does superb work at describing the unconditional love he has for his son while confronting inner conflicts that resulted from unfortunate circumstances that prevented him from seeing his son. Whether you are a father, son, daughter, or mother, this journal invites reflection and realization that love transcends all. A definite must read!"--Karina Hernandez

"This book is a touching work by a father struggling to maintain a relationship with his son. As in many cases of marital conflict often the children pay the price of losing contact with the non-custodial parent. Writing a journal is an innovative way to maintain emotional contact with the missing child. The contents of the journal range from the highly moving to the mundane. The ultimate value will no doubt be for the players involved. However, as a practicing psychotherapist the value of journal writing has long been recognized. Reading the book would be of value for those considering journal writing as a way forward towards personal growth. Although the content of this journal is beautiful and reflects the author’s sensitivity and courage to put it “out there,” ultimately the value for the widespread audience is in the illustration of the process of journal writing. Interesting and valuable reading."-- Dr. Antonio Juarez

"Do you know how many times a heart beats a year?  There is not an exact number; every person's heart works differently.  Based on evidence and google, we can assume it is somewhere around 35-40 million times a year.  Zemi's heart has been beating approximately 420 million times throughout all his life… his dad was only there to feel his heartbeat for less than a fifth of that.  Each word, each sentence reflects what does it feel to live in the shadows, daydreaming with an encounter that never happened, with a bedtime story that has never been told.  Every phrase I felt Jose's excitement to run and tell Zemi I am here, I am your dad I will always be.  On the other hand, the emptiness the loneliness and confusion of not knowing himself, and not finding who he was..  Every entry reflects agony.  The way Jose carries his journal and documents every aspect, hoping someday his son will read it; each time he had to imagine his son in front of him, picturing him through a photograph- hoping that the next entry he will write, "I finally hold you in my arms, and you recognized me."  Perhaps it is a fact Zemi is a part of his soul, a part of his that has been taken away, and now fights to get it back or at least keep the memory alive.  None of those heartbeats mattered until the last one Jose felt- when he pressed Zemi's chest against his, for the very last time.  I can easily define this book in a few words: honest raw loneliness passionate painful--how he painfully described his mistakes, the uncontrollable passion full of selfishness that ended up in a tragedy.  The last entry has a perfect closure, it shows how much José has grown- focusing more on objectives and a clear vision:: Zemi."

--Estefania Mitre

"You get to go through the raw emotions the author went through.  You get to see he had a chance to be happy but deep down inside he feels he isn't worth it so he destroys it.  It makes you wonder if Jose will ever get to see his son.  We can be quick to judge and say he didn't do much but some of us haven't been in his shoes.  A story of self destruction and self punishing.  Each page makes you want to know more and more until you finish it." --Rosa Moreno

"Emotion-driven.  My emotions were submerged in the reading.  I could feel Jose's innermost feelings.  This book deeply hit home, as I have brothers that have gone through similar journeys with my nephews.  I laughed, cried, and made me wish my brothers would have created something like this for their sons.  I hope those who do not have their father in their life read your book, Jose... Because eventually one of them will be Zemi.  I highly suggest having it in Spanish as well.  To conclude my review, you stepping away and publishing this proves YOUR LOVE for Zemi."--Diana Serrano

"The piece is intimate, captivating, and genuine.  It offers an inside look into a particular fatherhood journey.  It is ultimately a declaration of distant love to a son who, for many reasons, is not there.  It illustrates the complexity of human exchanges amidst many obstacles of communication.  Despite limited interaction as a father, the message to Zemi remains a raw testament to continuous presence."--Manuela A. Gomez

"This is a heart breaking but inspirational story of a father's love for his son." --Celia Dubrule 

© 2019 José Luis Páez   zemiadore@gmail.com   915-820-8316