Charlie a stay home Dad and ‘wanna’ be writer finds himself out on his ear after his wife discovers pornographic images on his computer. Wandering around with nowhere to go and feeling depressed Charlie finds himself on a bridge contemplating suicide. In an ‘It’s a Wonderful life’ moment a disturbance saves him from himself, when he goes to investigate he finds a person engulfed in flames. The burning man turns out to be ‘Trouble’ a strange character who says he is ‘here to help’. Trouble introduces Charlie to ‘Kathleen Talton’; an old lady with Alzheimer’s, who wants someone to finish writing her dead husbands book. They talk and decide it would be the perfect position for Charlie. He soon realises there is more to this story than he thought when his research points him towards corrupt politicians and his own family members.
Although very different stories I see similarities between this and JG’s first novel ‘The Chain Gang Elementary’. The protagonists in each book are men in failing marriages who work from home and look after their children while earning considerably less money than each of their ‘power hungry’ ’money loving’ wives; who by the way also share a feeling of boredom and intolerance towards their inadequate husbands. Both books have a conscientious lead character who is far from perfect and a plot that has an anti-racist theme, an issue I feel must be close to the authors heart or locality.
This is a very well written novel with a varied vocabulary and structured prose, clearly Mr. Grant has the skill required to construct a sentence and write a good story with a complicated plot and a diverse set of characters. I was intrigued by ‘Trouble and Romy, they were both characters that I had to think and wonder about, and hadn’t expected to find in this book. overall I found Brambleman to be and interesting and informative read.
Copy supplied for review.