Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Book Review: A Hole in the Ground Owned By a Liar by Daniel Pyne

PG-13, 3 stars

The author, Daniel Pyne, has written screenplays for such movies as The Manchurin Candidate and Fracture. I have not seen any of the movies he has written, but I have heard of them, so I kept that in mind while reading this book.

The title comes from a quote attributed to Mark Twain as found in the The Autobiography of John Jays Hammond.  There is no other record of Twain calling a mine "a hole in the ground owned by a liar", so we do not accurately know if he said this.

Lee is a high school shop teacher in Colorado.  While looking on Ebay he comes across someone selling a mine.  It's an odd thing to sell on Ebay, but Ebay is the home for odd things.  Lee buys it.  He doesn't care about making money.  He thinks it will be something fun.  Ever since his divorce he's been in a rut.

Checking out the mine Lee runs into some interesting characters which create for him an interesting time.  It's these band of characters, including Lee's recently released from jail brother, that make the story.

The story felt incomplete.  There was no climax.  I felt what we're aiming towards never happened.  It wasn't at the end.  Pyne's great at developing characters that are true characters, but that seems to be the only thing he's good at.  Carrying a story is not his forte.  If I choose to read this book again I may find something different.

I won this book in a giveaway.  All opinions are my own.

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