Tuesday, January 8, 2013



“Alright then, let’s get these shingles up on the roof so we can have a good time tonight with a clear conscience.”
This sentence ends the first chapter and the age of innocence for Jeremy Rogers.  It is a sentence of irony and foreshadowing. 

“Lost in Clover” is an enjoyable, well-written story.  The night that follows the sentence above is not fun and results in many years of a terribly guilty conscience for Jeremy.  I sympathized with Jeremy and his depression, but I was not emotionally involved to the level that I would have liked. 

Jeremy feels inferior to some of his friends because of the difference in social class from the beginning, something to which many of us can relate.  He’s a good kid with good values who is trying to do the right thing.  He gladly accepts an invitation to a barbeque with many higher-class kids and finds himself pulled into their drunken decision to harass their lifelong tormentor.  Jeremy bails on his friends before the night takes a tragic turn.

He spends years feeling guilty, and beating himself up for a part he did play in the ensuing tragedy as well as for other poor decisions he has made or opportunities he has missed.  In the end, he gets a chance to do something honorable and heroic, and that was gratifying to read.  The very end of the book, however, was corny.

The pacing of the book was well-done, and the plot was strong.  More development of some of the characters, as well as the town of Clover, would have made me more emotionally invested in the story.  While the life-changing events of that night are unquestionably tragic, I did not have a moment then, or anywhere else in the story that I felt a strong emotion for any of the characters or any of the events. 

Eddie Cooper is the perpetrator of the tragic events and is well-developed in the way that I’d like to see some of the other characters developed.  Eddie is angry and violent. His backstory helps us understand his actions and sympathize with him to a point.  I would like to know more about Kevin’s relationship with Jeremy in the past.  Tell me about some experiences they had together.  Tell me more about some of Clover’s residents.  Tell me more about the town – what does it look like, what kind of social activities go on, what does the town celebrate and how?

The language is clear and precise and easy to read.  There were no distracting technical issues.

I recommend this as a fun, easy read with a good plot.

Book Cover Description

Welcome to Clover, Kansas, a small town sitting in the middle of America’s Heartland. It is a peaceful community, until the night that high school student Jeremy Rogers accepts an invitation to party with the “cool” older kids. After things go irreparably wrong, and Clover is thrust into the national spotlight, Jeremy keeps his involvement a secret. As the town heals from the tragedy, Jeremy falls into a psychological abyss from which he cannot escape, until he encounters the monster from his past and has an opportunity to redeem himself. A novella.

About the Author

Travis Richardson was born in Germany, raised in Oklahoma, and currently lives in California. He has worked over 20 jobs in fields ranging from hot dog vending to television post production to university fundraising. His novella Lost in Clover came out in November and he has a story in the anthology Scoundrels: Tales of Greed, Murder and Financial Crimes. He has a few short stories published online as well. He also writes screenplays and directs short movies. Find out more at http://tsrichardson.com

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