Lucas is slightly inebriated when he calls in at a funeral parlour to discuss the disposal of his father’s remains. His intoxication might account for his making a pass at the mortician when it’s Mariana, the IT expert at the pharmaceutical company where he works as a researcher, he’s most keen to impress. But it’s hard to engage in romantic pursuits when everyone thinks he should be grieving. And so he is, although not for his father’s passing but for the terrible event he witnessed in the summer of 1989 that tore his family apart.
Meanwhile, granted compassionate leave from work, Lucas accompanies Mariana on a visit to her parents in New York. Although introduced as a friend, there’s the promise of something deeper until a random act of kindness towards a stranger backfires and threatens to tarnish his prospects as a partner and potential son-in-law with the shadow of his addictive past.
Paul Read’s second novel is about friendship, family and fatherhood and the possibility of redemption. Tightly plotted, and gently humorous in tone, it’s an engaging read, although I’m not sure I’d have given it the literary fiction tag. You can compare my reflections with that of others on the blog tour – it looks as if I’m right at the end. Thanks to Legend Press for the copy and the invitation to join.
And talking of blog tours for second novels with slightly unreliable male narrators with father issues, mine kicks off in a couple of weeks. More details on the way!