April 10, 2013

Book review: "Pacific Offering," by Tom Mahony

(CCLaP is dedicated to reviewing as many contemporary books as possible, including self-published volumes; click here to learn how to submit your own book for possible review, although be warned that it needs to have been published within the last 18 months to be considered. For the complete list of all books reviewed here, as well as the next books scheduled to be read, click here.)

Pacific Offering, by Tom Mahony

Pacific Offering
By Tom Mahony
Casperian Books
Reviewed by Jason Pettus

In my half a decade of reviewing indie literature now, the one great small press that I think most gets overlooked is the fantastic Casperian Books; for while they always pick the most superb authors out there when it comes to the specific thing these authors are trying to accomplish, what this tends to be are smaller, more slowly paced character studies, which when combined with their lackluster covers tends to get them lost in the shuffle many times of the literal thousands of indie presses that now exist. Take Tom Mahony's Pacific Offering, for example, which doesn't offer up too many thrills from its actual storyline -- longtime surfer buddies take one last poverty-stricken road trip to Mexico to catch some waves, realizing along the way that they are growing too old to tolerate the recklessness of such trips anymore, and that their diverging lives are rapidly bringing an end to even their friendship, a serviceable enough plot but no great shakes. But when it comes to evoking the melancholy tone and feel that such a premise suggests, Mahony has few peers; and as someone who lives in the area and most likely has picked up the board a few times himself, he brings a real authenticity to this telling, and really pulls you in to the southern California coast and all its details in an engaging and impressive way. A quiet and winsome book but a compelling read, perhaps your life won't be changed by its small slice-of-life scope, but certainly you will be rewarded by this well-done loss-of-innocence tale.

Out of 10: 9.0

Read even more about Pacific Offering: Official site | Amazon | GoodReads | LibraryThing | Shelfari

Filed by Jason Pettus at 3:27 PM, April 10, 2013. Filed under: Literature | Literature:Fiction | Reviews |