Great pen-drawing of a less than desirable person

May 28, 2014 by Ian J. Miller (Lower Hutt, New Zealand) on Amazon | 4.0 out of 5 stars

They say the skill of a reviewer is judged by the reviews of that which he does not like. So, with trepidation, I think Clark has nailed this story, which is essentially a third person reminiscence of the life of “He”, generally referred to as “K” in the story. Before buying the book, use the “Look inside” feature and read the first excerpt, which should let you know whether the book is for you. The story of K is one of a sex-obsessed alcohol-ridden self-pitying sociopath whose only real goal in life is to fantasize about sex. In his thirties he is a translator whose drinking leads him to lose his job and any real association with women; in his forties he has some sort of relationship with Alana that seemingly satisfies neither of them; in his fifties he descends into BDSM, and has a sort of fantasy relationship with two dommes who also receive whatever income he makes.

From the technical point of view the drawing of K is extremely good, but that of the three women less so; they are somewhat one-dimensional, and are there mainly to carry out the functions necessary to keep the fantasies going. That is, more or less, the plot. (Sorry if that spoils it, but it is rather difficult to describe the book without saying that much.) The four stars are because I cannot for the life of me see what more Clark could have done with such material, given the constraints he set himself, but the fifth is absent because first, plot is essentially absent, and second, for me the self-pity wallowing went on too long. That, of course, is a matter of opinion. Given the restrictions and the material, the writing is excellent, the balance regarding the subject matter seems acceptable (although here I may be the wrong judge) and the descriptive passages are clear

Wayne is a Montreal based writer, editor and translator.

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