JB Duncan grew up in South London where, against expectation, he did well at school and was the first member of his family to study at university. His memories of further education are mostly of cricket, but between matches he read theology and went on to train for ordained ministry in the Church of England.
He has recently retired but looks back over a varied ministry in largely urban parishes. Over the years, he has flirted with fiction but he now, finally, has time to share the stories that have been fermenting in his head for more than three decades.
He is married with children, is looking forward to being a grandfather but has absolutely no intention of growing old gracefully. His zest for life, and absurdity, are sharper than ever and his novels, which are rooted in his experiences as a Parish Priest, are exuberant and entertaining. JB insists, however, that his novels are in no way autobiographical - not even slightly...
on Feb. 13, 2014 :
The short novel shows the inner workings of the selection of the next vicar of the Church of England. It is a fun read of the deceptions occurring in the hiring process.
There are quite a few characters for such a short novel and the reader is not able to fully know any of them - that would require a longer book.
Humor is a difficult subject and, depending on the reader's mood, some of what is present in the story might be acceptable or it might be slightly offensive. There are a few vulgarities.
One issue this reader had with the story was that the opening scene is repeated later in the story in its entirety (too wasteful for a short story). Also, this is confusing as there is no indication as to when this event transpires - until the reader gets to the "repeat" scene in a later chapter.
(review of free book)
on Dec. 25, 2013 :
I downloaded this on a whim because it was free, and am I ever glad I did.
A cosy, gosspiy tale of Trollope-esque machinations within the Church of England, it giggles with rather than at the institutional foibles, and the ending made me laugh out loud.
I'm downloading the rest of the series right now.
(review of free book)