As I promised in a previous blog post, I am going to share books I've enjoyed with readers out there. I'm going to practice what I preach about how sharing a book is helpful for both readers and writers alike!
Yesterday I finished A Forgotten Man by J. Pepper Bryars. I picked this book up when it was free, but the normal list price is $2.99, and believe me, it's well worth it. It's not a book filled with action and adventure, but it's not needed - there is enough emotional anguish to keep you on the edge of your seat wondering what is going to happen to the Bosarge family.
Below is my review of the book. I tried to keep spoilers out of it, so hopefully I didn't give too much away about it.
This is a heartbreaking, gut wrenching read. What makes it so good is the fact that the things happening in this book are real! The book follows main character Jack through having a good job at an oyster company all the way to unemployment and desperation. I want to say more about what happens through the book, but I don't want to spoil it for people who are interested. If you are looking for a happy, feel good book, this isn't it, but it still is something I think everyone in America needs to read. It is eye opening and more times than not, I felt like someone was punching me in the stomach.
I really got attached to Jack and Donita. I felt like I was there with him at the gas plant as he sat and waited for his job interview. I was feeling the nerves he was probably feeling and hoping that finally, luck would be on their side with something. I kept thinking, this book has got to end on a happy note. Jack and Donita will find jobs and they can continue on with life the way it was before his other job got shut down. Instead, Jack is faced with tribulations and pain of not working. He is a man full of pride and doesn't want to take assistance. The book demonstrates how, that over time, it gets to where he stops caring what others think and knows his job is to make sure their little girl, Julia, is taken care of.
The relationship between Jack and Donita deteriorates just like you'd imagine when put under stress. Jack makes desperate decisions thinking it is helping his family, only to later learn that it really hurts them, but he's not a man to just sit around and wait. This book is a good example of how government can take something away, but then try to "help" you with their assistance after you are laid off and left with nothing.
I'd love to continue to gush about this book, but I don't want to spoil it for anyone. If you want an honest, modern day Grapes of Wrath type story, get this book. It is unsettling to think that what happens in this book is happening right here in our backyards.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book - and frankly, I'm glad it didn't have the cookie cutter happily ever after ending that so many books tend to have.
I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars. Kudos to J. pepper Bryars for writing a book that I'll share with any other bookworm out there!