Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Charlatan's Boy - Jonathan Rogers

The Charlatan's Boy: A Novel by Jonathan Rogers
Waterbrook Press

Rating: 6

Jonathan Rogers has no qualms with creating his own intriguing words and grammar. The Charlatan's Boy is a lively, amusing, and somewhat rambling read from the first person perspective of an unusual orphan boy.

Grady has no idea where he comes from or belongs. The only man he knows is a the showman and scoundrel, Floyd. The two travel through country towns putting on a variety of absurd shows where Grady performs as a wild Feechie, an ugly boy, or a head bump translator. All the while, he tries to come to terms with his trade, lack of identity, and the unreliableness of the most prominent person in his life, Floyd.

The book's humor helps balance the lack of a constant driving force and rising action. Many of the chapters dealing with new people and places, the book never mentions again, which give it a short store or memoir type of feel. The ending seems a bit tidy and out of the blue, but is fairly satisfactory. At least Floyd shows his true colors very clearly and Grady is happy, even if it's all highly unlikely.

Jonathan Rogers is a creative and spicy author. I look forward to watching what he publishes in the future and hope for a little better structure and conclusion.

Thanks for reading,
Miss Pickwickian

Necessary Note: I received a free copy of this book from Waterbrook Press for this review.


Molly @ A Bit O' Shine said...

This is on my reading list for the year so I was very interested to come see what you had to say about it. :)

Miss Pickwickian said...

Cool. I'd be interested to know what you think when you get around to it. :-)

Jennifer said...

I recently read this book and actualy really enjoyed it compared to the normal fast-paced youth fiction. True, it didn't have a lot of building action but more of a rambling style, but it was intriguing nonetheless. I mean, a book about Feechies has to be interesting, right? :)

Miss Pickwickian said...


Yes, I see your point. Part of my reservations may be due to the fact that I'm not really into fantasy that much and the whole feechie thing was a stretch for me. ;-)

Thanks for commenting!

Jake said...

I loved this book. :D It may be more interesting if you read the trilogy that came before this, taking place in the same world: The Wilderking Trilogy.

I found the style refreshing. :)

Happy Homemaker said...

Thanks for telling us about it!

Miss Pickwickian said...


I think it was actually your review that made me pick it out on Waterbrook. I totally agree that the style is refreshing.

The only thing I have against it was it's lack of rising action or character development. You only really see Floyd and Grady through the whole book and Floyd doesn't really get any more depth of character.

I am very excited to see what else this author comes up with...

Thanks fro commenting.

Jake said...

The next book should outline some good plot. :) It's nice to see a new character-driven novel, though.