Readers' Favorite Review

By Romuald Dzemo

A great treat for fans of historical novels, The Fade-Away by George Jansen presents life in a small town, Port Newton. It's a town with its own baseball team, even if it is suffering because of the youth moving away to bigger cities. The story starts with a dramatic event --an unconscious man floating into town. When Constable Long John pulls an American Indian, a tall man wearing a tuxedo, from the water, he is unconscious, and the incident sets off a chain of events that will affect every part of community life around Foghorn Murphy's Railroad Exchange Saloon. This is a beautiful tale that explores love, greed, and power. But it is also a wonderful portrait of what America looked and felt like at the dawn of a new century.

George Jansen has a unique gift for storytelling and his inimitable voice grips the reader right off the bat. I was enticed by the quirkiness in the narrative voice, the vivid, somewhat humorous descriptions of scenes and characters, and the author's deft handling of both the conflict and the plot points. The narrative is gripping and emotionally charged. The characters leap off the pages, each crafted with a life of their own and a role that is clearly defined. The measured use of backstory keeps the narrative alive. The prose is clear and enjoyable, punctuated by exciting dialogues. The Fade-Away has a great setting and I loved the way the author explores the physical, cultural, and political aspects of the setting, allowing each element to fall neatly into the literary tapestry. It is a very enjoyable read, transporting and rollicking.


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