Monday, March 07, 2005

WAITING FOR THE WORLD TO END by Nicole Hunter (iUniverse)

It’s all about the human experience.

Let me say that WAITING FOR THE WORLD TO END is not only one of the best POD books to find its way to my lap, it is one of the best books I have read—and certainly one I repeatedly recommend to friends and family.

Here’s the one-liner: Thomas Olsen, 41, Head of the English Department and Basketball Coach of a High School in Indiana wrestles with a painful mistake he made in his youth.

Stop yawning.

This is literature, man.

Nicole Hunter writes so beautifully it could have been about Thomas Olsen’s love of dirt. But it’s not, and it’s sooooo good. Thomas Olson has it all, yet remains an outsider, living in complete loneliness, hopelessly unfulfilled—until he takes a young basketball star under his wing and falls in love with the boy’s married mother in an ultimate attempt to fix the wrongs of his youth and paint over the cracks of his life.

The novel is touching and beautiful. It is the kind of story, like, say THE LOVELY BONES, which might require you to read a chapter to become fully engaged. You need to experience the beauty of Ms. Hunter’s writing and let the magic unfold incidentally. She intersperses poetry sparingly/appropriately and it enhances the plot in just the right way at just the right time.

Oh, stop.

Every guy is grabbing for his mouse. Hey, the story is about a basketball coach, dude.

Friends of mine, 13 in all, women and men, have all unanimously enjoyed this book—maybe for different reasons, but who cares. Of those same 13, only 8 enjoyed THE LOVELY BONES.

This story is wonderful. The story is touching. It’s about pain and grief and regret and all that crap that New York is saying is the current hot plotline. But as a POD title it might never see the light of day. And that is a shame.

Give it light.