Flabbergasted Fiction Review : 2003/04/13
by Ray Blackston
Grand Rapids: Fleming H. Revell, 2003, 327 pp., $22.99 hardcover.
I don't review fiction. I don't like first-person fiction. After all, you know the narrator isn't about to die, so any scenes of distress are bound to be resolved happily, and without a third-person insight, who knows what the other characters are really thinking or doing? So why am I reviewing Flabbergasted
? Because it's a great little novel. No, it won't be studied in literature classes a decade from now, but it will provide plenty of enjoyable moments on the beach or Stairmaster this summer.
has a humorously flippant tone as it examines life in a church singles' group. Our stockbroker protagonist only starts attending because his realtor tells him that church is the best place to meet single girls in Greenville, South Carolina, where churches outnumber bars by a twenty-to-one margin. You'll know this isn't typical Christian fiction fare when when you read early in the first chapter:
The rumbling of a car engine woke me. It was Sunday morning. I sniffed the air, and above the fresh paint I detected the scent of females four miles away at North Hills Presbyterian Church.
Most of the characters are post-college singles, although a married surfer dude and a widowed old pastor who likes to fish play significant roles. The singles run the gamut from Darcy--a tall blonde who drives the lime green Cadillac on the book's cover--to Stanley, the sanctimonious theologian who finds that none of the girls are willing to put sunscreen on his back during the beach retreat. Then there's Allie, a missionary to Ecuador who enjoys food fights and hanging out with her best friend Darcy when she's back home. Our narrator Jay definitely has an eye on her.
This is Ray Blackston's first novel, but pre-release hype was so successful that a third printing was required before Flabbergasted
hit bookstores this week--naturally a sequel is in the works. I'll be eager to read that as soon as it's done.
Looking for an enjoyable read this summer? Flabbergasted
won't disappoint you. If you're like me, you may even chuckle out loud while your spouse is trying to sleep!
Read more about Flabbergasted
and Ray Blackston at his web site
2 comments for Flabbergasted