“My husband requested that I download this book because a Facebook friend had written it. I downloaded a sample, and way before I completed it, I ordered the book. The descriptions are rich and wonderful. I'm a voracious reader, and often I will skip some of the descriptions to get to plot points more quickly. But not this time. I found myself rereading some of the descriptions so I could be sure I was getting every last little morsel of detail. No word felt extraneous, none was wasted. I wanted to savor each and every part. I found the style somewhat reminiscent of John Irving, perhaps even E.L. Doctorow.
“I wanted to write a review from the beginning, but I wanted to make sure the author could sustain the voice of the novel and bring off the story line before doing so. So I waited. I spent the afternoon yesterday reading the rest of the book, and I can say without reservation that this book accomplished all it set out to. I loved it.”
Though the paperback version of Mr. Boardwalk won’t be available till June and the publicity is just gearing up, sales of the Kindle e-book have already been brisk, and readers have made some wonderful comments on Amazon. Here’s our favorite, from a reviewer named Jean B. (We don’t know who she is, but she explains her relationship to the book.)
The excellent novelist Alan Drew has checked in with a comment on our new title, MR. BOARDWALK:
"Vividly evoking the carnival energy of the Atlantic City boardwalk in the 1970s, Louis Greenstein captures the longing for places and people who linger in memory. MR. BOARDWALK is a sensitive portrayal of loss, regret, and the difficult yet healing task of coming to terms with your past."
Many thanks to Mr. Drew for those kind words. If you haven't read his Gardens of Water (a modern-day Romeo-and-Juliet tale set in Turkey), we recommend that you do so--right after reading MR. BOARDWALK. The image above links to the Amazon page for Mr. B., and here's the link for Gardens of Water.
Perhaps the best praise for any novel is that it seems so real the reader feels as if she or he were right there, witnessing the events. This is exactly what Joe Samuel Starnes, author of the acclaimed novel Fall Line, has to say about MR. BOARDWALK:
"Like a world-class juggler, Louis Greenstein’s Mr. Boardwalk pulls off the impressive feat of handling several things at once: His debut novel is a heartfelt bildungsroman, a story of a man coming to terms with his complicated youth, and a vivid novel of place. The depiction of 1970s-era Atlantic City is particularly well crafted, marking Greenstein as a writer with a keen eye for the ocean-side resort in the years just before casinos came calling. Although I grew up in Georgia and never visited the Jersey shore before the new millennium began, this novel makes me feel as if I was there, circa 1975, eating a soft pretzel on the boardwalk."
The Kindle e-book is available on Amazon now (click here). The paperback is due out on June 3, 2014.
Joshua Isard, writing in Small Press Reviews, is the first to review Mr. Boardwalk, forthcoming in paperback and already available as a Kindle e-book. The novel follows Jason Benson from age seven, when he first sees the town he comes to love, to his adult years, when he comes to terms with his losses and regrets. Here's a quote from the review:
"Mr. Boardwalk’s central concern … is Jason’s love for Atlantic City in the mid-70s, and his nostalgia for it in the present day. Jason’s teenage years down the shore were those immediately preceding legalized gambling, when Atlantic City wasn’t exactly a more innocent place (Greenstein deals honestly with the drug and sex culture of the era), but a more honest one. Before the huge casinos with faux themes and the false hope of winning big, the city was full of local seasonal businesses which, in the novel, seem to act more like family than competitors.
"Greenstein brings us vividly back to that time, while also reminding us that it was not without its consequences on the individuals who lived it, and that nostalgia can have a bit of a dark side as well. Through the novel, Jason’s love of Atlantic City begins to border on an obsession, which affects not only his life in the 70s, but also his adult life. This connection between the two narratives is one of the real strengths of the novel, and leads to a tight, satisfying ending."
Click on the cover image to read the full review. Click here to buy the Kindle version from Amazon.
Official publication is not until June, but the ebook for Mr. Boardwalk is now available at Amazon. Get the Kindle edition now and find out how Jason the Magnificent juggles the wonders of Atlantic City, including love, grief, soft pretzels, crazy parents, fortune-tellers, and a wife who doesn't believe him. Click on the image to go to Amazon.