Title: Growth and Change Are Highly Overrated by Tom Starita
Genre: Currently rated Best Sellers Rank #5022 in Kindle eBooks, Literature & Fiction, Humor & Satire, General Humor
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, LLC
Publication Date: December 2016
Growth and Change Are Highly Overrated – I did not like the cover; cannot read the author’s name
Protagonist Lucas James is a middle child and an over-the-top narcissist. His whole world revolves around his becoming a major musical god. Truth be told, he’ll tell you up front, his music, his songs, his next gig will always be #1 on his mind, in his thoughts, and his only real drive in life.
In reality, can this be at all possible? No, he has gone past the age at which if he were ever going to be successful at song writing, it would have happened. It hasn’t. What is left is an adult who refuses to grow up, lacks any kind of personal responsibility (or at times moral code), and certainly is incapable of any kind of empathy for other than himself. So, what in the world could his “Apple Jack” have ever seen in him in the first place?
The loss of his ten-year relationship with Jackie sends him spinning–and yet he is still asking himself if he really loved her that much. Hence, we are treated to a one-sided conversation in which we serve as a pseudo-doctor sitting quietly with pen and pad in hand while he spins this tale, sounding his philosophy, and generally espousing his view of the world and the people in it on you, the captured reader/listener.
While he may ask you a question, rhetorical or otherwise, he’ll answer it himself before you have a chance to form the answer. The tale follows him as he ruthlessly uses child and adult alike for his singular purposes, managing to find other living quarters, employment, and move with virtually no money.
An accomplished liar, he has escalated facial expressions and body language to new heights of glory, only catching him occasionally, and forcing him into even deeper larcenous, obscene situations.
Are the characters fleshed out? Oh, yes, to a very satisfying degree. We know exactly who they are. We are introduced to his family situation–his two brothers being the sensible, dependable sons a mother could love, and the despicable father who had split leaving his mother to fend for herself with the help of her older son, Eddie, who took over as “man of the house.”
Dialogue between Jackie and himself as well as that of his brothers or co-workers is natural and believable. The man is nothing if not totally obtuse when it comes to dealing with women–and probably echoes many of the same conversations with men and women everywhere.
It is his employment situation, however, at “That Store” that leads to Lucas James’ epiphany and the title of this book, detailing the stocking of his new crib, his relationship with the other employees, and his supervisor, that SOB.
I was given this book in exchange for a review. Not generally one of the genres I read, accepted it as a diversion to several “heavy” books I was in the process of completing. I was definitely not prepared for this one, but as compelled to read as watching a train wreck, and discovered a whole new genre (for me)–profound satire. It will have you shaking your head, getting angry, but you’ll read it anyway–and probably enjoy–I did–and can recommend. Thankfully, author Tom Starita had an excellent editor and the book is remarkably free of typos, though I was not thrilled with the cover.
Rosepoint Rating: Five of Five Stars
The Author: As you might guess, Tom Starita has been there, done that. He has taught religion, tried sales, and is now helping foreign exchange students find homes in America. A keen observer of people’s decision-making processes, he has collected rationale and dispersed the expression back through his writing. He now lives in the beach community of Stratford, Connecticut. ©2017 Virginia Williams