Wendy reviews ‘Wave Goodbye to Charlie’ by Eric Arvin. Published by Wilde City Press October 12, 2014, 206 pages.
My name’s Charlie. I’m many things, though none of them having to do with any real talent. I’m a runaway, a hustler when I need to be, a ghost when I have to scare hoodlums away from my home, and a loner who maybe reads too much. But most of all, I’m the keeper of the carnival. That’s how I see myself. I look after the place ’cause even dying things need to be cared for. Maybe it’s illegal. Maybe that rusty metal fence around the carnival is supposed to keep me out too. Or maybe me and this place were meant to find each other. Truth is, I never felt at home anywhere but here, not even in all the foster families and orphanages I was placed in as a young shit. They don’t look for me no more, those places. I suspect I ran away so much they finally just said, “Fuck! Let him go.” I am a hangnail on society’s manicured middle finger. I’m older. One year past the age anyone gives a shit.
And this is my adventure…
NOTE: We were given a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I was given the opportunity to review this book and couldn’t accept fast enough. I have been wanting to read this author for a long time now and am so happy that I finally got this chance.
I didn’t know that this story was about death when I started to read it. Maybe I should rephrase that… I didn’t know that this story was about Charlie’s death when I started to read this story. There, I put it right out there. It’s not really a spoiler, because Charlie dies fairly early on in the book. Anyhow, I was surprised. It’s a fantastical journey, in this case to the Evermore; that he takes us on and Mr. Arvin made me cry really hard right away and often during the ride.
I adore Charlie. He’s under-educated, he’s prideful and he’s stubborn. He’s had to do things that most of society would look down upon just to survive, and he just thinks of it as a job. Like most of us, he is all too human, but he has a fierce devotion to the few people that have made his life better and loved him along the way. Yet he has a grasp of humanity that you don’t see in many of the most educated people out there. His journey and his trials in this story are heartwrenching.
In this book the secondary characters are just as important as the MC. Leroy and Jimmy are just about as special as they come. I don’t want to say too much about them, but trust me… special, beautiful, lovely men that have one of those loves that you want for yourself. They love Charlie like a son and try to get him to live with them, but in his stubborness, Charlie refuses. He doesn’t refuse their love though and it’s that love that keeps him tethered to this plane while he has the fight of his life…er… death.
This is just a really good book! Great writing, adventure packed, you can picture yourself in the scene along with the characters and then there’s THE FEELS!!! This book has lot’s of feels and love, this book has bunches of love in it too. I will be reading more Eric Arvin books directly.
10 of 10 pots of gold, equivalent to 5 of 5 stars or 100% recommended.
Where to buy:
Where to add: goodreads
“Some of [Arvin’s] work is as direct as Hemingway with the sensitivity of O’Connor or Shields, and yet others nuanced as if Maupin wrote a letter to Penthouse.” – Thom Fitzgerald, director THE HANGING GARDEN
Eric Arvin resides in the same sleepy Indiana river town where he grew up. He graduated from Hanover College with a Bachelors in History. He has lived, for brief periods, in Italy and Australia. He has survived brain surgery and his own loud-mouthed personal demons. Eric is the author of WOKE UP IN A STRANGE PLACE, THE MINGLED DESTINIES OF CROCODILES & MEN, SUBSURDITY, SIMPLE MEN, and various other sundry and not-so-sundry writings. He intends to live the rest of his days with tongue in cheek and eyes set to roam.