.T. Kelly knows how to pull a reader into the pages and slam the covers shut on you. His books are intense and overwhelming. This is very true for his most recent effort, Save Me, Joe Louis
It is a book about a young boxer named Robbie who is in the middle of several relationships. There is his mom, his mom's boyfriend, and several men concerned with Robbie's career. However, it is Robbie that is the strong figure in the novel as opposed to the confused adults that surround him.
Kelly writes in a style that can only be described as intense. Sentences, thoughts, and introspection are welded together with no waste. Words are used with greatest care in a short book the extremely compelling.
Like Kelly's 1987 Governor General's Award winning novel A Dream Like Mine, the focus is on character development rather than plot. Each character's mind is opened up and explored critically. This style gives the reader great insight into the characters and helps them to learn a little about themselves. Where other authors might resort to clichés Kelly tells the truth in a refreshingly clear way.
I could go on to try and describe the book's plot but that would do no justice to what Kelly is really doing. He creates works full of finely honed sentences that envelope the reader in a strong emotional grip.
Save Me, Joe Louis is without a doubt the most highly recommended book I have read in a long time, perhaps since I first read A Dream Like Mine.
published by stoddart