journal · writing · photos

April Fool

a book review

product linkApril Fool
authorWilliam Deverell
date reviewed2006.03.27

This is an engrossing story set in the Channel Islands of British Columbia. It features an aging lawyer moved to action when his activist wife gets herself confined to a tree-top. It also features an aging thief who stands accused, once more, of a sex crime.

These disparate tales move through different worlds, even as they touch upon the same geography and the same institutions. Deverell (a laywer, activist and journalist, according to the profile in the back) calls upon his own extensive background in the court and among activist folk to depict a fascinating if lunatic world. The author stocks the scenery with plenty of entertaining minor characters who serve, through their lunacy, to keep the story grounded*.

Meanwhile, the two main characters wander through the story with a very realistic sense of self-awareness. The thief sees himself as a fuck-up, while the lawyer bemoans his age and decrepitude. Both are hounded by their mistakes and regrets.

I recommend this book for its readability, its strong character depictions, and the way it combines regret with a sense of hope.

*This is an interesting technique that I've used in my own tale – show how the main character(s) are bound to their course by the restrictions placed by those around them.

👍🏼 recommended

Any links to Book Depository are not a paid affiliate link.


rand()m quote

It has always seemed strange to me...The things we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling, are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest, are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first they love the produce of the second.

—John Steinbeck, Cannery Row