Some Books will encourage a click on the “Buy Now” button just because of its cover. Hello World: Meet Mother Rebecca by Rebecca Frost Cuevas is one of those. If the Victorian headdress and great smile don’t get you, the subtitle The autobiography of a fictional Victorian know-it-all might be enough to clinch the sale.
There is a lot of humor in this novel. Cuevas, acting as both Actual Rebecca and “I” is the narrator who occasionally makes direct humorous asides to the reader. As for the humor; it is good, understated, and threatens to conceal the fact that there are very good, solid, philosophical points made. Many would argue that the world would be a better place if these faith-based humanitarian ideals were more operational.
Mother Rebecca is wise and knows many things, perhaps everything. It is logical that she would know everything. As was stated many times, Mother Rebecca is older than dirt. Age and wisdom correlate directly, right? From various sections of the novel, we know that Actual Rebecca, “I,” the author, created Mother from a variety of sources during her “actual” growing up. She could not channel Mother Rebecca, a wise woman offering advice on things such as marriage until she had more of an understanding of marriage. By the time Actual Rebecca was fifty plus years old, she was able to give such advice plus tech support. Taking lessons provided by Aunt Sophronia and a nanny, Mrs. Happy, Actual Rebecca was able to merge wisdom, assembly instructions, and computer user instructions.
In order to be an expert in all things, Mother Rebecca needed life experiences. Terrible at math, she was not sure how many husbands she had throughout her life, but she could remember the notable ones. She had a son, later known as Mr. Knit-It-All, with her first husband, Mr. Fix-It-All-Up. She had one philosophy of marriage: “The secret to a happy marriage is separate houses.” (p.35). Her husband had a complementary but differently phrased philosophy: “The reason to get married is to have a witness to your life.” (p.35). Mother Rebecca’s third, forty-seventh, or fifty-second husband (she really hates math) was Head Honcho.
Mother Rebecca loved greenhouses. Inside these normally physically visible constructions, Mother Rebecca planted seeds of abstract feelings and experiences, such as the seed of loss. She collected these seeds from the experiences of Actual Rebecca (AR) as AR went on her life’s journey up to the age of fifty when AR decided to make life changes. Up to that time AR had experienced almost nothing but loss. She had lost her mother, two children during childbirth, and a husband who she was still friends with. Her son, Youthful One, had left home and moved to the Big City. AR decided to go on adventures. At that point, AR and Mother Rebecca (MR) became one. It was AR as Mother Rebecca who married Head Honcho. Whichever husband he was, there was to be a divorce. Rebecca had married into a tribe that would not accept her and the pair reluctantly agreed to a divorce so Head Honcho could fulfill his predestined tribal duties. And this is where the novel takes a new direction. From how Mother Rebecca came into being we enter the world of “What can Mother Rebecca do for you today?”
The answer is that she can give advice on surviving life. As Cuevas tells us, Rebecca’s life is all about helping others. “If Mother Rebecca were working full time at a job, or raising more children, or tending to grandchildren, she would not have time to write blogs and ebooks and lesson plans for you. She would not have a way to listen to you and hear your issues and concerns. Her heart would be full of others, and the details of everyday life.” (p. 74).
At this point, the novel has some similarities to Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. The novel has 111 pages total and the entertaining build up to what I consider the philosophical point has taken seventy-four pages. It can be inspiring. Mother Rebecca will even solve the mystery of the two-sided triangle. (p. 78).
This novel is available on Amazon for USD 0.99. I gave it five stars for its unique writing style and understated, subtle humor.