Note: I received a free copy of this book from the author. All opinions, are my own. You can read more about Lance Umenhofer on his website.
Book: And the Soft Wind Blows
Author: Lance Umenhofer
Year Published: 2013
Genre: Poetic Fiction (which according to the book’s website, means poetic ideas told through prose using poetic elements like rhyme, repetition, and anaphora)
Morality Rating: PG-13. Some mention of sexual themes, drug use, and violence.
Readability Rating: 3 stars
A browbeaten, timid man finally cracks.
There were some things about this book that I liked. The writing style, although not my favorite, was well done and easy to read. I think the themes that the author wanted to get across came through clearly. Although this book is not my style at all (I prefer happier plots), I think it was well done.
Characters: The characters are the strong point of this story. I found myself hating all of them, more or less, which I think is a sign of a good character description. If you can evoke strong emotions of any kind in the reader, than your characters are good.
Plot: This book is classified as a novella, which is halfway between short story and novel. I found it read like a short story, where it takes place over a short period of time and doesn’t really have the typical beginning, climax, and resolution of most novels. This is one reason why this kind of story is not my favorite, because I like to feel like there was a reason for the story. This felt like a tiny window into someone’s depressing life.
Setting: I’m guessing the setting for this story was in Georgia or some other Southern place. All the characters talked like Colonel Sanders. If it said in the story, I didn’t notice it.
Writing Style: I am not a fan of the modern writing style, I guess. Call me old-fashioned or closed minded, but I really just prefer stories written more in the style of Terry Pratchett or Brian Jacques.
This book is nothing like the kinds of books that I would choose to read on my own. However, I think it is done well in the style in which it was intended. Not quite well enough to convert me to like that style, but closer than I would have thought.