Monday, October 10, 2011

Review # 38: Powder Dreams by David Ward-Nanney

     Powder Dreams by David Ward-Nanney is a novel about Bo Grayson, a ski bum who has no life plans except to find the best "powder" on the ski slopes. He only works an occasional temporary job, and any money he earns is quickly depleted on skiing and other less than legal pursuits. He doesn't see his life as squandered, but as an adventure; even though he lacks an actual home-base and has no real friends or family. He continues on this route until he is trapped in an avalanche, both literally and figuratively. Is skiing really his only goal? And is it enough? Depression sets in and Bo decides to analyze his life, his friends, his goals, and his career using Jungian methods. This is how he figures out who he could be, but he is still knee-deep in money problems, debts, and the urge to revert back to old habits. He eventually changes and begins living for the first time in his life, which is followed by him making and sustaining actual relationships outside of skiing and work. Even with all the progress he makes he still has problems, but he figures out how to deal without relapsing.
      I requested this book because I have always been into psychological processes and how everyone functions differently under stress, whether emotional or physical. The premise sounded very interesting, and the use of Jungian analysis appealed to me since I had recently read about it in a Psychology class. After receiving it, I found the overall set-up interesting with the six different sections comprised of their own chapter numbering system, separate from the others. I found the chapter sizes to be perfect, not too short or long; and the content and dialogue were very well organized and understandable. As for the characters, I found it fascinating how Bo was set up, very complex, but not so much that you couldn't follow the change in his overall attitudes and emotions, most characters were developed enough to serve their purposes. The plot was very intricate, I found that once I had an idea where it was going, it would shift again and it would end up somewhere else entirely; especially when Bo started the therapy and was torn between his old actions and what he was trying to achieve. Overall, I enjoyed reading Powder Dreams and may even find a copy of Particular Obedience to start reading. Nothing like reading about a guy finding himself and contemplating finding one's own self.

Rating: Bounty's Out (3.5/5)

*** I received this ARC from LibraryThing Member Giveaways (Mud Season Publishing) in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

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