Monday, August 1, 2011
Review: 40 by Travis Thrasher
It's nine months before your fortieth birthday, and an angel named Matthew has just informed that you will die on your birthday. What do you do? This is nightmare that Tyler Harrison in Travis Thrasher's latest novel 40 is thrust into. He's a moderately successful music producer who is largely unhappy with the way things have turned out in his life. Thanks to the fear-mongering preaching of his dad on the horrors of hell growing up, Tyler has spent his life running from God. Now he's faced with terrifying visions of himself dying in various ways at various times in his life and looking back on a string of broken relationships and deep regrets about the life he's lived. With months left to live, Tyler must decide what it is he believes and who he's meant to be in the final moments of his life.
I loved this story, and it was definitely one of Thrasher's best. I especially loved the ode to Thrasher's previous novels on page 382. Thrasher has an incredible talent for plunging a reader into the world of his character. In this case, that world is the world of a music producer, and I loved journeying with Tyler in this respect. The way the story twists near the end is brilliant.
40 is a gritty story about regrets and the implications of the choices we make, for good or bad. It's about evaluating our lives and closing the gap between who we are and who we should be.