Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Meteoric Rise of Simon Burchwood

The Meteoric Rise of Simon BurchwoodThe Meteoric Rise of Simon Burchwood
Author Scott Semegran

On his way to New York to celebrate his impending literary success, Simon Burchwood is the prototypical American careerist. But a quick detour to Montgomery, Alabama to visit a childhood friend sends Simon on a bizarre journey, challenging his hopes and dreams of becoming a famous writer. This is a character study that delves into the psyche of a man who desperately tries to redefine himself. Is Simon pompous? Yes. A jerk? Yes. Will you like him? Absolutely!

Review:  Simon is like most of us, he wants to be someone someday.  Also like most of us, he can’t help but constantly judge, assume, hypothesize, condemn, envy and pity (just to list a few) people of the world.  You’re probably judging me right now thinking who does she think she is accusing me of such things?  I think I am the all seeing, all knowing writer of this review!  Forgive me I digress!  Simon Burchwood is a reflective character that forces a reader to look at the shameful, dirty parts of our humanity.  Can he help who he is?  No more than any of us can.  His perception is comical and ironic as well as sadly maddening because of its truth.  Perhaps, not our truth, but nevertheless the truth according to Simon Burchwood’s world and just in case you doubt what he says, he’ll kindly punctuate the wisdom he shares with a ‘it’s true.’  This is key because near the beginning the reader is told this is a dream and that we’re not to forget – but you can’t help but forget.  It’s debatable and when the ‘dream’ plot is used well (which it is) it can be thematically complicated in a mind melt sort of way.  In addition, there is plenty of evidence peppered throughout the story to support one way of thinking or another.  I particularly zoned in on the possibility of dream symbolism and how it could be analyzed and applied to what was happening in Simon’s life.  Is any of it real or is Simon’s journey to the Barnes & Noble flagship store in New York just a really messed up fantasy?  
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See special Twisted Tales feature May 5, 2011

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