Goodbye Lemon by Adam Davies, is a great book. Okay, I wish I could just stop there, but I should justify why I say this.
Adam Davies, author of "The Frog King," has a great mastery for the English Language. He can describe thoughts, scenes and actions with such vividry that places you not only in the scene but in the body of the person doing the action. In fact if the character wants to fight, as the reader you may feel your fists tightening up. In another sense, this wordsmith, uses the language to create a Prose/Poetry reading in this novel about getting a grip on your emotions and reality. The words just flow from the page. And to top it all off, he even teaches you a few new words in the process.
In "Goodbye Lemon," Jack Tennant is returning home after 15 years. But not really by choice. Jack has avoided home and family due to a long life of dysfunction, lack of family emotion, and a secret no one wants to talk about; his dead brother, Dexter or better known as Lemon. Jack is returning home only because of the urging of his girlfriend/fiance to be after learning his father has suffered a stroke and now is trapped inside with what is called "locked-in syndrome," a condition that leaves him fully intact mentally but unable to speak or move except by blinking one eye. The only way his father, Guilford Tennant, is to recover is to fully develop new neural pathways in the brain. This developing new pathways and new ways of thinking is a great undertone in the reshaping of reality in Jack's life.
Jack's mother is an obsessive compulsive clean freak, his father an alcoholic along with his living brother Pressman. His father, an ex-marine, in a fit of anger, during Jack's past, broke Jack's finger making it impossible to pass the audition for acceptance into Juilliard. Pressman has lived in the parent's basement just squeaking by in life by drinking away his reality.
Jack's memories of his father are only of his father drinking and neglecting the 2 surviving sons. Jack's memory also recalls that his father is responsible for his brother's death. Dexter was only 6 years old when he drowned in a lake at the family's vacation home. I don't want to give too much away but keep in mind that memories, especially bad ones, have a way of changing to fit with the reality you can face. Just as Jack's father needs to rebuild neural pathways, Jack has some rebuilding to do as well, or he could lose his girlfriend, his family and himself.
Keep the tissues handy for this book. Some great emotionals peaks and valleys are involved with the reading of this book. Also if you read for the sheer enjoyment of reading, this is one of the most enjoyable books I've read in years for all the reasons I've listed.