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on 6 July 2012
I have read all of Cormiers books and find their themes of loss, alienation, moral cowardice and flawed heroes - very well described and compassionately handled.

This is one of his earlier novels and deals with a resident in a old folks home using the gift of some money to visit the centre of the town of Monument. Once there he bumps into a mentally disturbed former colleague, rings some uninterested acquaintances, embarrasses a friend at a wedding, gets drunk, gets served a Mickey Finn, ends up in a very exposed public position .... in some cases you can see the punchline coming... but the handling is assured.

Is this the most hip and happening viewpoint = no, this is mid-1960s USA from a small-town point of view! The underlying themes of inclusion/exclusion are universal and the main character is essentially a decent man, just out-dated....

It is a quick read and worth the effort if you liked Cormier's more well known novels like "The Chocolate War" and ant ot see how his writing style developed over the years.
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