Monday, March 30, 2020
"The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock" - Jane Riley
I kept hoping that "The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock" would completely grab me, but it just never did. It was good enough that I hung in there until the end, but it's one of those rare books where the 3-star rating was evident from beginning to end.
"The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock" was a pleasant enough read, but tonal inconsistencies bothered me - Was it about self-improvement? Was it a romance? Was it a PG-rated "40-Year-Old Virgin?" It never really completely nailed a tone and I never really cared much for Oliver Clock.
In fact, the only character who completely grabbed me was Edie.
I also found at least a half dozen weird wording and/or grammatical choices in the Kindle version - they were significant enough that they actually pulled me out of the story. While I can deal with that from an indie author, from a book having an actual publisher I expect greater attention to editing.
Riley's writing seemed stronger with female voices. Oliver, especially in the first half of the book, just never felt authentic to me and was left with dialogue that didn't feel natural. It improved in the second half, considerably, but I still had an easier time buying into the book's female characters.
The entire first half, really, felt awkward to me and the resolution with Marie a bit too abrupt. That issue with abruptness also plagued the end of the book.
Overall, I don't regret having read "The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock" but I can't deny being somewhat disappointed with it.
Richard Propes is an award-winning writer/activist/minister who has traveled over 6,000 miles by wheelchair over the past 30 years raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for children's organizations on his acclaimed Tenderness Tour events. Author of "The Hallelujah Life," Richard is the founder/publisher of TheIndependentCritic.com and has been the recipient of numerous awards for his activism including Indiana's Sagamore of the Wabash, Kentucky's Order of Kentucky Colonels, and Prevent Child Abuse America's highest honor, the Donna J. Stone Award. Richard is a member of the Indiana Film Journalists Association.