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Book Review: Irrevocable Acts

July 30, 2017 - Before I begin, let me mention that Jonnie Hyde is a member of the writing group I belong to, here in Vancouver, Wa. I took a stab at writing a novel about climate change awhile back; it wasn't very good, and subsequently went nowhere. Irrevocable Acts, on the other hand, is deserving of attention.

The beginning of Hyde's book is, perhaps, its only weak point: it's a bit confusing. All becomes clear as the book unfolds, and the characters are interesting, so there's no question of remaining involved. The characters hold your focus because they live their lives differently from most, yet the Sanders are a family, with three generations living under one roof: Anna, Kate, and Gracie. That family begins to unravel when the matriarch, Anna, decides she must embark, finally, on the life she was meant to live.

Anna, Danny Shepard, and Mac Caffrey have been friends most of their lives. Products of Berkeley at a time when the name Berkeley was believed to mean only one thing, they have drifted apart over the years, while at the same time making anguished attempts to remain a trio. An irrevocable act binds them, and its effects reverberate down to the present moment.

Anna initiates yet another such attempt at healing. Danny and Mac answer her call, and follow her to an isolated location. During the ensuing days, they gradually make their way through a tangle of memories, with an occasional detour into the unknown. Anna's love affair with Mac's younger brother Erin makes its way into the conversation. Finally, their complicity in his death can no longer be avoided. Accusations surface, and truths are told. It's all too much for any one of them, so they decide to face it together.

Having at last made their way to a good place, Anna then asks her mates if they are ready to risk it all.
With the help of Danny's mentor, rancher-cum-gun runner Jackson, he and Anna forge new identities for themselves, even as they join their lives together. The willingness to burn bridges in this book is breathtaking and, I believe, a true assessment of the sacrifices the current situation demands. Mac takes on a new role, filling a vacancy left by his intrepid friend, Anna.

I highly recommend this fearless, truthful book. It's available at Amazon.


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