‘Dream Café’ by RJ Gould
“Why on earth am I here?” David wonders as he observes the juvenile antics of ex-classmates at the twenty-five year school reunion. Then he sees Bridget.
David draws up a list of all that he hopes to achieve to kick-start a new life now that his wife has moved in with his best friend – his ex-best friend. A relationship with Bridget is top of the list, opening an arts café is a close second.
Formidable women – an unfaithful wife, a reckless teenage daughter, a boss from hell, a disapproving policewoman – seem like insurmountable obstacles.
But it’s still OK to dream, isn’t it?
I don’t think I’m giving too much away to confess that I have a birthday coming up in the next couple of weeks. A “big” one. One with a zero at the end.
As it happens, it is a “big” birthday which puts me in close proximity to David, the lead character of ‘Dream Café’. Having decided against attending my own school reunion (to paraphrase a friend’s response, he’d rather defecate in his hands and clap) I really felt for the character as half remembered school contemporaries lunge at him as the novel opens.
As the book progresses, we learn that poor David has quite the complicated back story, with all sorts of unpleasant behaviour having been dealt to this rather nice, if vague, protagonist.
Personally, I think a nice romantic comedy which nips along with ease of reading and light touch charm and ‘Dream Café’ has this in abundance. David is a hero we can root for and, even including the necessary ups and downs which must befall all characters in this genre, it is comforting to know that all will – up to a point – turn out right with the world.
Incidentally, I too have a secret dream to abandon my career and relaunch ala David – but perhaps I’ll have to wait until nearer his age to do so 😉
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Author Bio –
Richard writes under the pseudonym R J Gould and is a (rare male) member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association (RNA). His first novel was shortlisted for the Joan Hessayon Award following his participation on the RNA New Writers’ Scheme. Having been published by Headline Access and Lume Books, he now self-publishes.
He writes contemporary literary fiction about relationships, loosely though not prescriptively within the Romance genre, using both humour and pathos to describe the tragi-comic journeys of his protagonists in search of love. ‘Dream Café’ is his sixth novel, following ‘The Engagement Party’, ‘Jack and Jill Went Downhill’, ‘Mid-life follies’, ‘The Bench by Cromer Beach’ and ‘Nothing Man’. [It is a rewrite of ‘A Street Café Named Desire’].
Ahead of writing full time, Richard led a national educational charity. He has been published in a wide range of educational journals, national newspapers and magazines and is the co-author of a major work on educating able young people. He lives in Cambridge, England.
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