***** Outstanding Sentimental Adventure Review by Rox Burkey
Author Scott Semegran masterfully tells the story of four best friends, William, Miguel, Brian, and Randy, who survive the trials of 1986 in Texas suburbia. They battle bullies and fears in a coming-of-age framework. These teenagers fall in and out of trouble exploring life and learning to make decisions. Some of the consequences of their actions, like most youths, were only realized upon reflection.
William Flynn delivers the story’s point of view. His memories add a natural flavor. It made me think of the movie The Sandlot, which my sons watched repeatedly. Pictures appeared in my mind, listening to the vivid smells, tastes, sights, and sounds masterfully described throughout this adventure.
Several things struck me as I listened to this story come to life. The diverse backgrounds of these boys, no bigotry here, did not deter them from being closer than brothers. They always had each other’s backs. They created a bond without cell phones, pagers, or high-tech amenities, just bicycles, backpacks, and that unique method of communication between close friends.
Tim Sailer did an excellent job maintaining the pace with clear delineation between character voice and pure narrative. Tim’s voice acting brought the brilliant writing of Scott to life. Those readers fond of Stand by Me, by Stephen King, or Lord of the Flies by William Golding will find this story a cut above due to the heartwarming camaraderie of these boys.
I highly recommend this to adolescents and would like to see it required reading in high school. Most older adults will enjoy flashing back to their youth and remembering the value of honest friendships. Once you start this one, you won’t stop until the end.
About the Author
Scott Semegran is an award-winning writer of eight books. BlueInk Review described him best as “a gifted writer, with a wry sense of humor.” His latest novel, The Benevolent Lords of Sometimes Island, is about four middle school friends who sneak away to an abandoned lake house to evade the wrath of high school bullies, only to become stranded on the lake’s desolate island. His previous novel, To Squeeze a Prairie Dog: An American Novel, was the 2019 Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Winner: Silver Medal for Fiction – Humor/Comedy, the 2019 Texas Author Project Winner for Adult Fiction, and the 2020 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award Gold Medal Winner for Humor. His book Sammie & Budgie was the first-place winner for Fiction in the 2018 Texas Authors Book Awards. His book BOYS was the 2018 IndieReader Discovery Awards winner for Short Stories. He lives in Austin, Texas, with his wife, four kids, two cats, and a dog. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English. Scott Semegran is one of the web series Austin Liti Limits hosts and fellow award-winning writer Larry Brill. Learn more at https://scottsemegran.com/
About the Narrator
Tim Sailer is a storyteller.
For more than ten years, he has been a regional theatre artist, performing on various stages across the country. During his five years with the American Shakespeare Center, he played more than 50 roles in 35 plays. Other classical companies include Utah Shakespeare Festival, Texas Shakespeare Festival, Houston Shakespeare Festival, and Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre. In Minnesota, he has performed with Park Square Theatre, Theatre L’Homme Dieu, the Orchard Theater Collective, and spent three seasons with the Commonweal Theatre Company.
Tim is an audiobook narrator. He narrates a variety of genres in his home studio in South Dakota.
He has an MFA from the University of Houston Professional Actor Training Program.
You can follow on Twitter and Instagram