Don Handfield. Sky Village Press, $12.99 paper (272p) ISBN 978-0-9854552-8-6
Handfield's novel about a fallen football star and second chances—the 2011 film adaptation of which, written and directed by Handfield, starred Kurt Russell and Christine Lahti—will resonate with readers. One of Scott Murphy's finest moments came as a high school star quarterback when he scored the winning touchdown in the championship game in Coldwater, Ohio. But Murphy was viciously tackled on the same play, leaving his leg bones shattered. Living in Coldwater 20 years later, Murphy, who lost his father in the Vietnam War, still suffers from his football injury and is haunted by fantasies of his stunted pro-football career. A volunteer fireman, Murphy's life is a succession of failures—his soybean farm is financially imperiled and his marriage is sexless and stagnant—and he sees suicide as the only option. But instead of a heavenly afterlife, Murphy finds himself young again, back in high school, and with the opportunity to change the course of his life. Although the premise of righting the past's wrongs is a well-worn theme, the author's treatment is engaging and his breezy, uncomplicated style will appeal to readers looking for a feel-good summer read.
Reviewed on: 07/09/2012
Release date: 04/01/2012
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