BookPleasures.com - http://www.bookpleasures.com/websitepublisher
A Questionable Life Reviewed By Mary Lignor Of Bookpleasures.com
http://www.bookpleasures.com/websitepublisher/articles/1485/1/A-Questionable-Life-Reviewed-By-Mary-Lignor-Of-Bookpleasurescom/Page1.html
Mary Lignor

Reviewer Mary Lignor: Mary is a retired librarian, originally from Connecticut but now living in New Mexico. All her life Mary has loved books and has passed this love on to her daughters. Mary started working in a library when her children were young as an Assistant Librarian and ended up as its Director. Her favorite books are suspense, political intrigue and anything involving the World War II era.




 
By Mary Lignor
Published on November 6, 2009
 

Author: Luke Lively
ISBN: 978-0-8253-0521-4

My apologies to Mr. Lively and I do wish you good luck.  I'm sure there are many out there who could commiserate with you about Jack, as there were so many takeovers of small businesses this past year by huge conglomerates

Author: Luke Lively
ISBN: 978-0-8253-0521-4

Click Here To Puchase a questionable life: A Novel 

Philadelphia banker Jack Oliver has been biting and scratching his way up the ladder of success at Philadelphia Trust and Guaranty to the detriment of his wife and children, (not to mention, mistress) who he only seems to pay attention to when they can promote his image, and his friends when they can help him in is business life or anyone else who has gotten in his way.  He has planned his future for years with the certainty that he would one day become the CEO of the largest bank in the state of Pennsylvania.  He worked his way up from the lowest position in the bank to the second highest.  Then, Philadelphia Trust and Guaranty is bought by Merchants Bank, one of the largest banks in the country.  Jack is flabergasted when he is demoted to the bottom rung of the ladder and perhaps out of the bank all together.  He has always lived for his work by ignoring all the doubtful practices of banking and now that he is at the peak of what he calls a successful life, everything is about to be taken away.
 
A good friend of Jack's, yes, he still has one, suggests that Jack needs a change of scenery and introduces him to Franklin Price (Benny), an old-fashioned president of a small town bank in Virginia, who wants to hire Jack and also tries to advise him on what matters most in life.  But, Jack being Jack is very superior and doesn't even try to listen to anything Benny has to say, believing that Benny is a 70ish dinosaur of the banking business and what could he really have to say about how things are run in the 21st Century.   Jack felt that he and Benny had nothing in common but does find out finally what success really means and what a wise man Benny really is.  And, lo and behold the Merchants Bank decides to come to Virginia to gobble up yet another bank.  This is when Jack finally seems to wake up to the fact that success means a lot of different things to different people.
 
I have to say that I did not like Jack all that much until I read about his parents.  His father did nothing but belittle him and his mother.  The mother loved to make quilts and was very good at it.  She was asked by the parish priest to show a quilt and become a member of the quilting team for the 1976 Bicentennial honoring the state of Pennsylvania.  When she was honored her husband told her, "You're wasting your time and my money doing nothing worthwhile sitting on your duff for hours working on fancy blankets and then giving them away.  Now you have found a new way to waste your time."  And to Jack it was, "Banking, bankers are crooks, they feed off other peoples misery or, are so rich they don't even count their money.  Is that what you want to be in life?  Count their money?  Be a buzzard or a leech?"  

It is said that children learn what they see but, it seems to me that Jack learned all the wrong lessons.  Instead of loving his family first and then his job.  He went the other way.  Instead of being kind and supportive of others he became just like his father.  In fact he became his father.  I'm sure that many will think that this is a very compelling story but it didn't do it for me. 

A good analogy would be the opposite of "Old Yeller".   "Old Yeller" starts out so happy, and ends up in disaster.  This book starts out with someone who is really hard to like. And, even though he ends up a better person, by the end I had gotten very sick of Jack and didn't really care all that much about his life.  I would have titled it something like "An Ambigious Life" as it was really a double-meaning life. 


My apologies to Mr. Lively and I do wish you good luck.  I'm sure there are many out there who could commiserate with you about Jack, as there were so many takeovers of small businesses this past year by huge conglomerates. 

Click Here To Puchase a questionable life: A Novel