Another Broken Wizard

Rated 5.00/5 based on 3 reviews
Jim Monaghan really didn’t want to go back to Worcester. But his father needed surgery just when Jim lost his job. Once there, Jim seeks out his childhood best friend, Joe Rousseau. But Joe has problems and a plan to resolve the matter that only makes things worse. Jim tries to help his friend, but as the danger escalates, he has to make a painful choice to save his friend. More

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About Colin Dodds

Colin Dodds is a writer. He grew up in Massachusetts and completed his education in New York City. He is the author of several novels, including WINDFALL and The Last Bad Job, which the late Norman Mailer touted as showing “something that very few writers have; a species of inner talent that owes very little to other people.” His poetry has appeared in more than two hundred seventy publications, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Best of the Net Anthology. The poet and songwriter David Berman (Silver Jews, Actual Air) said of Dodds’ poetry: “These are very good poems. For moments I could even feel the old feelings when I read them.” His book-length poem That Happy Captive was named a finalist in both the Trio House Press Louise Bogan Award and the 42 Miles Press Poetry Award. And his screenplay, Refreshment, was named a semi-finalist in the 2010 American Zoetrope Contest. Colin lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and daughter. You can find more of his work at thecolindodds.com.

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Reviews

Review by: Samantha Wasko on Aug. 03, 2011 :
Dodds is an expert storyteller, and Another Broken Wizard is no exception. The character depictions are skilled and heart wrenching but it is the dialogue that truly shines. It is witty, painful and all too real. His illustration of Worcester is extraordinary - the ultimate portrayal of a working class New England town. Another Broken Wizard is an engaging page-turner. I highly recommend it, and I look forward to more works from this author in the near future.
(reviewed 2 days after purchase)

Review by: curiousreaderMA on Aug. 02, 2011 :
I read this book because it was about Worcester mass, where i am from. not many books come out about Worcester. but it was mr. dodds's writing style was what kept me reading this book, as much as anything. he has a lyrical and minimalist and almost noirish chandler style. "Everyone loves the dead, right up until it costs something..." or “The beers came fast and Dad finished his before I knew it. He ordered another, taking me for a designated driver. I took a long swig of my own just to stay competitive. The fish came on wooden blocks.”
Also: as for Worcester, it gets a the same noirish treatment here—and it’s an acute depiction of one of the many post industrial New England towns....for example, “The Fountainhead apartments beat the future to a punch that was never thrown, and look out of place. Three concrete slabs in the middle of a lawn.”
But he also brings it back with some tender moments—as if he can’t quite go noir all the time. “First you‘re an infant, then you‘re a kid, and you get put in a town, then in a school. You pretty much have no say in it. But you find these friends who will always know you, no matter how far you wander. They become another family, the family of your heart, corny as it sounds.”
Natural voice. Natural storyteller.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Robert Wasko on Aug. 01, 2011 :
Colin Dodds has written a taut character study carried on the back of a plot-line that propels the reader from page to page. Jim, literally set afloat by having been laid off from a financial job in New York City, is also figuratively afloat in a sea of emotions. His parents are divorced and his father is about to undergo surgery. Jim returns to his hometown of Worcester, Massachusetts both to take care of his father to find a place to drop anchor. He looks for moorings with his lifetime friend Joe, who optimistically schemes to get out of his own troubles, with his bitter mother, with his school friend Emily, with Olive, a new acquaintance by virtue of a chance meeting at the hospital and, to a lesser extent, with Serena, the girl he left back in New York.
Jim's interactions with these various friends and family members add dimension to his character as he struggles between loyalty to his father and to his mother, between unabashed friendship with Joe and the risks created when Joe actions become criminal, and among the varying levels of emotional support offered by Serena, Emily and Olive.
The novel is well conceived and well executed, both in descriptive narrative and in dialogue which is both authentic and believeable. There is a nice balance between pathos and humor. The absence of cliche is refreshing. Another Broken Wizard is a novel worthy of attention and which shows promise of more from its author.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

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