Life is one big learning curve. It’s an unorganized series of trials and errors. Our errors lead us to other trials, which lead us to more errors. We mold and shape hypotheses about ourselves and the world around, and at the point when we realize we are not the center of the world, we mold and shape some more.
Yet, we are the center of our world, but we play such a big part in so many others. That is what Chester “Chet” Patterson learns in The Chester Chronicles, a novel by Kermit Moyer.
Moyer binds his main character, and narrator, to a chronological timeline whose chapters reflect like memories. Chester’s increasing age is the only thing holding one chapter relative to the next, and the story hops through his childhood like a frog on a lily pad.
As a boy, Chester lives the life of an oft-uprooted army brat. He is ever-conscious, but not necessarily to things which help him most. It is this which makes him both a good narrator and a good character. Chester is flawed and often confused. He gets lost in the embarrassment of pre-adolescence, the insecurities of adolescence and the false securities of high school and college. At times he is too smug for his own good, and as with us all, he has the flaw of not recognizing what is best for him. What Chet never loses, though, is his insight.
Chester’s perspectives of the underlying truth are seldom different from the ones we have taken away. And if they are, it is because we’ve missed something. With Moyer’s succinct grasp of metaphor and his ability to relay universal truths into layman’s terms, the most complex and perplexing of Chester’s thoughts become decipherable.
At times the sentences run epically long, though they hardly border on tedious. And taken in context, Moyer’s run-on sentences suffice well for the run-on thoughts inside our heads. If anything made The Chester Chronicles less than a pleasure to read, it was the author’s tendency for over-description. Some things that should take a page and a half to describe, in pinpoint detail no less, take three or four. It is this which takes away the ability to read The Chester Chronicles in one sitting.
To learn more about Kermit Moyer, please visit his website.
Dave is a writer, songwriter and journalist from Cleveland, Ohio. He spends his work days working and the rest of his time being as creative as possible.
This book was provided free of any obligation by Permanent Press. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.