Friday, March 16, 2012

Book Review: Little Did I Know by Mitchell Maxwell

Open the pages of Little Did I Know by Mitchell Maxwell and discover an engaging historical coming of age novel that is rich in description.

When Sam August finds an advertisement in the local paper about an historic theater for rent in Plymouth, MA, the wheels in his mind start turning. Along with his college friends, JB, Secunda, James and Elliot, they decide to create a summer theater program like no one has ever seen. Of course, Sam didn't count on Dr. Anderson Barrows, owner of the Priscilla Beach Theatre being a thorn in his side. He also didn't count on meeting Veronica, who sets his heart to racing. But maybe Sam is the promised one. Perhaps everything he touches can turn to gold.

From the first page of this titillating novel, Maxwell weaves a story of summer musical theater on a grand scale. His prose is filled with rich descriptions, sports references, and plenty of sex, drugs, and profanity. Sam is a strong and engaging narrator. It's 1976 and he's graduated from college and looking for the next best thing. His friends are eager to support his endeavors, so they go along for the ride. The reader follows them through ups and downs, fun-filled nights and argumentative days where super sized egos threaten to bring the house crashing down.

I had a few challenges with this novel. The first was the editing. Missing opening or closing quotes and missing words were frequent enough that I found it distracting. While there is tons of conflict, everything seems to turn up rosy for Sam. With a speech or a carefully written letter, he's able to turn around his enemies and convince his colleagues to play just like Joe DiMaggio. The overuse of the F-word drove me crazy. Everyone said it and they said it often. It might not be unrealistic, but it was too overdone for me.

Overall, it was an enjoyable novel, and I'm glad I read it. I would look for more books from this author in the future.

Title:  Little Did I Know
Author: Mitchell Maxwell
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Prospecta Press; First Edition edition (September 27, 2011)
ISBN-10: 1935212575
ISBN-13: 978-1935212577
SRP:  $25.00 (also available for Kindle)

I received a free copy of this book from the author through Pump Up Your Book in exchange for my honest opinion. I received no monetary compensation of any kind for this review.

This is the thirteenth book I've read for the following challenge:

It is the eighth book I've read for the following challenge:

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