Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Review: Country Hardball by Steve Weddle

Steve Weddle introduces readers to a rural town that seems to be on its way to being obsolete in his debut Country Hardball. The jobs are scarce, the reasons to be happy are few and far between, and there is no shortage of more woes to come. As we are given insight to many different townsfolk, the main character Roy Allison seems to hold all the intermingling stories together.

Roy Allison has had more than a few run ins with the law. He's even endured a stint in Juvenile Detention. In an effort to remake his life, he returns to live with his grandmother to the town of his youth. From his first chapter on, it's apparent there are maybe some people who don't want him to remind him that his past is never too far from him. And it could quite possibly creep up and leave you bloody and dying in a creek.

Many of the stories in this novel are similar to Allison's. We are introduced to some hard working people who are one car repair away from bankruptcy, or banking on their sons ability to play baseball to climb out of the hole that has become this town. Weddle does not tell there story in an effort to get tears jerking but in a way that proves the resilience that is the human spirit.

Although with few resources, each character finds a way to get up each morning and keep moving on. Sure there are characters who may choose a sketchy way of skirting poverty while others just go to their 9-5s, each story relays the message that the choices we make are what matters. At many times I thought that maybe this town gave up... but that wasn't entirely true for me once I finished the novel. 

Ultimately, Country Hardball is an interesting told in stories that deserves to be read. Steve Weddle definitely held my attention and had me invested completely even with the short glimpses into their lives provided. I hope it doesn't always remain true that once somethings starts going, there's nothing that can bring it back. If that's true than our country has a problem.  ***

Copy provided by Tyrus Books via a Goodreads Giveaway

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