Wayne Barton
Reading Order: Book 17
Categories: 2019, Stuart Browning
Pages: 320
Suggested By: Wayne Barton & The Original Manchester Book Group
Date Started: May 31, 2019
Date Finished: June 25, 2019
Reason Book was Chosen: Wayne Barton contacted me and offered to come to one of our book club meetings and discuss his latest book Peach. We accepted his proposal and as such we will be reading this novel for discussion at the July meeting.
My Thoughts

Well what can I say, it’s always nice when an author contacts you and asks if you like to read his new for your book group but there’s always that anticipation that the group won’t enjoy it and they’ll pick holes in it at an author event.  I’m not sure how my book group will view this, for the record I enjoyed it in the main, but I had a few issues with it.

The premise of a young(ish) musician / songwriter moving to Idaho, USA to work with a famous, albeit stagnant, singer to get away from his troubles in England is a good one and I enjoyed the interactions between Freddy and Hal (and Louise for that matter) even though they were a bit disjointed and awkward.

I just felt that Freddy was too much of a “wet lettuce”, yes he’d had some bad news coping with the death of a mentor but he had so much good in his life for someone so socially awkward, he’d wrote numerous songs for acclaimed artists, mingled in good company, had relationships with multiple beautiful women and even managed at his own request to be out of the limelight yet still struggled with what life had given him.  Obviously Freddy is shy and introverted and his internal monolog explains how he struggles with decision making and trying to do the right thing (I can related to this I’m similar in many ways) but he’s also very selfish and I found it difficult navigate between his internal and external personalities.  His struggles telling Brooke how he feels is agonising throughout the novel, he opened up to her on his issues on their first meeting so how he found it difficult to talk to her about their relationship is beyond me.

Finally I thought the end was strange and it seemed a little rushed, I don’t want to give anything away by why would Ailie do that only to just capitulate at the very end.

All in all I enjoyed it but there is room for improvement.

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