Skip to main content

Book Review: Ashes by Steven Manchester

Title: Ashes
Author: Steven Manchester
Genre: contemporary fiction
Published: February 21, 2017
Format: paperback (advanced reading copy)
Source: author
Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)



Jason and Tom Prendergast may be brothers but they haven't had anything to do with each other for years. Raised by an abusive single father, the boys went their separate ways and never looked back. But when their father dies, his last impact on their lives is to push them together into a road trip across the country to spread his ashes and receive some sort of mysterious reward. Neither brother wants to take the trip, but they can't resist the potential inheritance that may be waiting for them at the end.

Ashes by Steven Manchester takes us along for the ride while Jason and Tom are forced to spend an entire week in a car together, unwillingly revisiting their past because of the one man that they both can agree to hate. The frustrations of hearing them speak but not listen to each other, and the humorous antics they adopt to annoy one another, make the ride rather bumpy but entertaining for the reader. Their dysfunctional childhood is brought to life as they reminisce about the way their father simultaneously brought them together and drove them apart.

I enjoyed these two brothers who drove me crazy at times. There's a lot more to the story than just the past. We get a glimpse into their current lives in which they both face challenges and changes. Both men grow throughout the ride, not just in their relationship with each other but also as individuals. It's definitely a character-driven novel that takes them both through important life changes.

If you enjoy humorous family stories, and the adventure of a road trip, I recommend you pick up Ashes by Steven Manchester, which will be released tomorrow. 

Read my reviews of other books by Steven Manchester: 
The Rockin' Chair 
Gooseberry Island
Pressed Pennies

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Getting back to blogging

It seems that blogging has dropped to the bottom of my list for the past year, and was pretty low for the year or two prior to that. I love to read, and am continuing to do so, but as my regular readers know I haven't been around much. My last blog post was almost a year ago!!

There are many things that have taken me away from blogging. Work has been much more challenging and interesting these past few years, but that means I really don't want to get back on the computer when I get home at night - or on the weekends.

Family life has been more busy with kids having multiple activities in the evenings, leaving little time to just hang out and write about the books that I read.

I will admit to a bit of a Facebook addiction, which means way too much time spent scrolling through my newsfeed instead of doing something more productive. This is one of the things I'm working on and hoping that this will free up some time for getting back to the blog.

Overall, life is good. Work is …

Book Review: The Bookman's Tale by Charlie Lovett

Peter Byerly is distraught over the loss of his wife nine months ago. He has retreated to their cottage in the English countryside, hoping to return to his love of collecting and restoring rare books. But when he opens a book about Shakespeare forgeries and finds a Victorian watercolor of a woman who looks just like his wife, Peter is soon on a search for the origin of the painting and the truth about Shakespeare's real identity.

The Bookman's Tale: A Novel of Obsession by Charlie Lovett is a wonderful journey for anyone who loves books. It follows Peter's search in 1995, which turns into a bit of a thriller at times. But Lovett also takes the reader back in time a bit so we can learn the story of his relationship with his wife and how he came to be a bookseller. He does a beautiful job of expressing Peter's feelings about the rare books he encounters, and his feelings are contagious.

And then he takes us back even further to the history of one particular volume, whos…

Book Review: The Secret Lake by Karen Inglis

When Stella and Tom move to a new home in London, they are sad to have left their friends behind. But soon they have a mystery to solve. Their neighbor's dog, Harry, keeps disappearing. Where is he going and why is he always wet when he comes home? As they investigate the area in the garden where Harry seems to come and go, they discover a hidden tunnel that takes them back to their garden ... almost 100 years ago.

The Secret Lake by Karen Inglis is a wonderful children's book that reminds me of the adventurous stories I read as a child. I saw other reviewers say something similar. I'm not sure what it is about the way the story is told, but it is reminiscent of children's books from many years ago, yet it will definitely appeal to the kids of today.

Stella and Tom have an adventure in the past that leads to new friends and discoveries. While it's a time travel story, it doesn't have a lot of fantasy elements (although there are some moles that act a bit unusua…