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In his second book, novelist Michael Snyder introduces us to three very unusual and distinct voices all torn by tragedy:

Willy Finneran, washed-up genre novelist with an espresso maker that just won’t die and a habit of avoiding conflict even if it means putting the truth on a sliding scale.

Ozena Webb, single mother and Javatek’s top customer service representative. She spends every evening playing board ...

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Overview

In his second book, novelist Michael Snyder introduces us to three very unusual and distinct voices all torn by tragedy:

Willy Finneran, washed-up genre novelist with an espresso maker that just won’t die and a habit of avoiding conflict even if it means putting the truth on a sliding scale.

Ozena Webb, single mother and Javatek’s top customer service representative. She spends every evening playing board games with her twelve-year-old son who is mentally crippled from an early childhood accident.

Shaq, a small and scraggy homeless man with trauma-induced blank spots on his memory, trying to piece together the story of his life while assisting Father Joe at the Mercy Mission.

As their stories intersect, the narrative vacillates between hope and naïveté, comic relief and postmodern ennui. Startling in its authenticity, this unforgettable novel reveals that no matter how far one has strayed from hope, there is always a way to return.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

In his second novel (after My Name Is Russell Frank), three very different people are united in their experience of tragedy. Each will learn that there is always hope no matter how dark life seems.


—Tamara Butler
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780310277286
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Publication date: 5/12/2009
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Snyder lives in Spring Hill, Tennessee, with is lovely wife and four children. He studied music in college and played guitar professionally for many years. His first novel, My Name is Russell Fink, released in 2008, and he hopes the world is a slightly better place as a result.
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Great Character Study!

    Great character study. We get a story narrated by three interesting people. First there is Willy. Willy is the recipient of a heart transplant and is spending this life almost "waiting" for his new heart to give out. He is obsessed with getting his toothbrush back that his ex live-in girlfriend took with her when she left him. He also wants to "kill" the espresso coffee maker that his wife had. The second is Ozena, a customer service representitive who craves a promotion and tries as hard as she can to avoid any suggestive advances from her boss Reggie. Ozena has an autistic son who occupies most of her homelife and has given up on men since the boy's father left several years prior. The third is Shaq, who lives in a homeless shelter. Shaq started to lose his memory and slipped into the way of a borderline crazy person.

    Of the three Willy is the driving force that causes conditions that bring the three of these individuals together. His obsession to destroy the espresso machine leads him to call the customer service center of the manufacturer and be assisted by Ozena. Immediately there is some fascination between the the two as his request is totally out of the norm from what most people call in for. Ozena becomes fascinated by Willy's determination and offbeat request. Willy seems to be obssessed with Ozena because she seems to listen to him with enthusiasm even though anyone else would have dismissed him as a crank.


    Then Willy accidently runs down a school mascot at a school reunion causing him to get in trouble with the law and being sent to community service. He ends up in the men's shelter where Shaq is living. The two are at odds at first but slowly a forced though tense friendship develops between the two.

    While being in the men's shelter, Willy's life gets further complicated when the young son of his ex-girlfriend is made his ward (you have to read it to find out).

    The author does a marvelous job of giving the inner thoughts of the three characters throughout the book and makes the reader really care about each one. Along the way a very good supporting cast is brought in from Father Joe who runs the shelter, Ozena's son Lloyd Jr. and Michael, the young boy in Willy's care.

    Additionally, Willy and Shaq have some interesting adventures together and Willy is constantly struggling with dealing with his actions that could have his community service gig revoked and land him into prison. A very good read!

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    Posted April 9, 2010

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