Friday, October 30, 2009

A Questionable Life-Luke Lively

A Questionable Life
Luke Lively
Beaufort, Oct 2009, $24.95
ISBN 9780825305214
http://www.beaufortbooks.com/

The job comes first to Philadelphia Trust & Guaranty banker Jack Oliver as he climbs the ladder of success. He ignores his wife Tina and two children Joshua and Jessica except when he needs them to promote his career. His friends are only buddies if they matter in his business life as does his colleagues.

When PT&G is purchased by the Merchants bank, Jack, twenty-seven years there and second highest in rank is stunned as he is kicked to the bottom of the food chain and maybe out the door if he is not careful. The stress and disappointment leads him to a hospital stay in which he learns who cares about him: no one as his family and his mistress fail to visit him. A friend John Helms introduces Jack to Benjamin “Benny” Price, the old-fashioned president of the small local Citizens Bank in Roanoke, Virginia, who hires Jack, but also mentors him on what matters in life even when Merchant Bank comes to town with its avaricious bottom line ledger.

This is an enjoyable inspirational drama that is It’s A Wonderful Life meets Scrooge in a modern but somewhat remote setting. The story line opens each chapter with poignant questions and related but somewhat clich├ęd citations, but the running theme throughout the plot is that it is never too late to change from a life evolved around the seven deadly sins to a caring loving person. Although the tale is obvious where it is going, readers will enjoy the journey.

Harriet Klausner

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