Book Review: Three Men on Tour by Richard Mapes ★★★★★
Three Men on Tour is a lighthearted novella about one man’s decision to outright avoid making a decision about whether or not to marry his girlfriend. It was well-written, so much so that it was only after I’d finished reading it that I realized I had just read what was basically a romantic comedy -though much heavier on the comedy than the romance. The humor is mostly dry, as British humor tends to be, but quite entertaining. At under 30,000 words, this one is a rather quick read, but well worth the time. This story also bears the distinction of having the shortest note to the author I have yet written for a Reader’s Favorite review. The only notes were that it needed a proofread to catch a couple of typos and I felt that one of the characters was kind of left hanging -both very minor points.
Here is my official review for Reader’s Favorite:
Ian Chapman is a magazine reporter who has a problem standing up for himself. He shoulders the workload for many of his colleagues just to avoid the confrontation of saying no. When his longtime girlfriend, Alicia, tells him that they’re going to get married, he has a problem saying no to that, too. It’s not that he doesn’t want to marry her, it’s that he doesn’t want to marry anyone. Rather than discussing his feelings with her, he does what any man faced with marriage would do: He goes on a four day bender with his friends Harry and George. Three Men on Tour tells the story of Ian’s booze-fueled tour across the English countryside to avoid making the decision. He’s searching for himself, but he may lose Alicia in the process.
Three Men on Tour is an engaging story that perfectly captures the mindset of a typical man faced with a difficult life decision, and the lengths to which he will go to avoid making it. Richard Mapes’ writing style is rife with witty humor which carries a distinctively dry, British flair. Mapes’s ability to get inside the head of the wonderfully quirky characters makes for some brilliant dialogue and decidedly realistic –while bizarre- situations. The locations and characters are drawn very well, and it even mixes in a bit of history about the locations the group visits. A buddy adventure with hints of romantic comedy, Three Men on Tour was a delightful read which kept me turning the pages.