By: Scott Martin
Publisher: Daylight Books
Publishing Date: March 2014
Reviewed By: Amy Lignor
Review Date: December 2013
‘On the Road’ by Kerouac is still hailed this day as an extraordinary journey. Let’s just begin by saying, Mr. Kerouac would be extremely fond of this new novel; it is literally one of the most engaging, beautiful, gritty ‘journeys’ to have come out in a very long time.
Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., New York, and Boston make up the scenic focus of this trip. But it’s not just the streets you walk down that will have readers feeling as if they are beside the main character, but also the descriptions that are so detailed at times that it feels as if the actual movements, hustle and bustle of the city - even the scents - are actually jumping off the pages.
A suspenseful tale builds during the time of the American bicentennial. Hoagland is a man with a passion for both music and writing. Dealing with a realistic yet cold and chilling tale, he finds himself immersed in everything from poverty to unemployment to the power of true love that can elate and break the heart. Hoagland has many issues in life, but the fiercest come from the working world, where he finds himself tied-up in a vindictive realm where publishing houses and the ‘powers that be’ within the industry put him to the test. Hoagland is a hardworking man with a poetic soul, and he brings the reader with him as he strives to make it in an industry that is not exactly known for ‘brotherly love,’ unlike the city he dwells in.
When it comes to the romantic side of life, Igla is the woman who comes to life within the pages. Her amazing character (almost mystical, in fact) brings words of wisdom, confusion, and sometimes pain to Hoagland’s world.
With each new day - with each new step along the trek of suspense, Hoagland must face everything from street riots to the shades and realities of law enforcement, black history and more; even the subject of women, seen through the eyes of Hoagland, gives readers a banquet of characters from Igla to Andrea, who is a female that gave Hoagland more than his share of hard times.
‘Technicolor’ is a description that cannot be used in reviews a great deal, because there has to be a certain type of poetry and a constant flow of both plot and characters to warrant the adjective. However, when it comes to this author’s take on what the souls of people carry with them as they walk the streets of cities across the country, readers will find themselves viewing everything they have come to love, respect…as well as repulse, such as the value of money versus the value of talent.
Quill says: For a small book, this author has unleashed a rich, vivid tale that readers will remember long after the book has come to an end.