Book Review: “The Year of the Storm” by John Mantooth

I went in to John Mantooth‘s new novel trying to manage my exceedingly high expectations (almost always certain doom for my opinion of any book) given how much I loved Shoebox Train Wreck. My fear was that I might somehow be setting myself up for disappointment by comparing it unfairly to a short story collection I considered one of the best books of 2012 (and one of my favorite books, period). My fears were unfounded. While it is early in the year, I feel confident that The Year of the Storm will still be in my top five favorite books of 2013 come December.

While I wouldn’t say that this book is as dark as Shoebox, it certainly carries on his trademark tone while strongly conveying a sense of youthful optimism at the same time. He tackles loyalty, loss, loneliness, and hope each with an emotional sincerity that other good writers couldn’t match if they focused on only one of those themes at a time. The natural comparisons to be made here are with other dark coming of age tales like Stephen King’s The Body (a.k.a. Stand By Me) and McCammon’s Boy’s Life. In my opinion, Mantooth has matched Boy’s Life and handily bested The Body.

This one really should be on your Must Read List for 2013.

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Buy it HERE.

* Note: I read an uncorrected proof of this novel from the publisher prior to its official release. Sorry. You have to wait until June. =(

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~ by poǝןɔɐɯ uǝʞɔɐɹq on 21/03/2013.

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