Book Review: Circumstances of Childhood by John W. Howell

Circumstances of Childhood
John Howell
Print Length: 299 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Keewaydin Lane Books (October 1, 2017)
Publication Date: October 1, 2017
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English

BLURB:  When a former pro football star and broadcaster, now a Wall Street maven, is accused of insider trading, will he be able to prove his innocence and expose those who are guilty?

Greg and his boyhood pal had dreamed of big success in professional football and then later in business. Greg was the only one to live the dream. Now the founder of an investment fund Greg is faced with a routine audit finding by the SEC. The audit points to irregularities and all the tracks lead to Greg. The justice department hits him with an indictment of 23 counts of fraud, money laundering, and insider trading. His firm goes bust, and Greg is on his own.

His best friend knows he is innocent but has been ordered under penalty of eternal damnation not to help.

REVIEW: This is an engaging story of friendship and brotherhood, and I really liked the way the reader meets Greg in the opening pages. We get a strong sense of his disappointment and embarrassment at the downward turn of events in his life. One day on top of the world, the next in a bar trying to remain unrecognized. This is even more of a poignant tale, knowing that parts of it are based on experiences in the author’s life. He had a good friend who played football with him in High School, and the two hoped to be able to play pro ball.

Keith’s character was also deftly presented, and I had to smile at his bumbling attempts to get his ghostly feet under him. Keith is a newly-minted ghost, and it takes a while for him to figure out just how a ghostly creature can move around. And he really wants to stay as close to Greg as he can, especially when things really start to heat up in Greg’s life.

While the story opens with Greg in the bar after his downfall, it quickly goes back to his childhood with his friend, Keith, and goes forward from there. The reader meets the family that takes Greg in after his father died and his mother went off the rails. Greg learns what a close, loving family can be, and that set him up for success instead of failure.

I liked the direct way the story was laid out with simple sentences and a straightforward story line. I’m not fond of stories that meander, taking the reader down extraneous paths, sometimes leaving them there which adds an element of confusion. There was none of that in Circumstances of Childhood, and it makes for a very satisfying read.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  John Howell began writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive business career. His specialty is thriller novels, but John also writes poetry and short stories. His first book, My GRL introduces the exciting adventures of the book’s central character, John J. Cannon. The second Cannon novel, His Revenge, continues the adventure, while the final book in the trilogy, Our Justice, launched in September 2016.

A stand alone novel, Circumstances of Childhood was published October 1st, 2017.  The Contract is written with Gwen Plano and released June of 2018. All books are available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

John lives in Lakeway Texas with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

You can find out more about John by visiting his WEBSITE and AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE * meet him on FACEBOOK  * GOODREADS * LINKED IN * and follow him on TWITTER

Come back on Wednesday when John will be my guest with some advice for new writers. Even us seasoned writers can use a refresher now and then, so I hope you will join us. Until then, be safe, be happy.

24 thoughts on “Book Review: Circumstances of Childhood by John W. Howell”

  1. Thank you, Maryann, for taking the time to read and provide this thoughtful review of Circumstances of Childhood. I’m so glad you enjoyed the story. I’m looking forward to being with you on Wednesday.

  2. I enjoy talking to John on his blog. I’m always harassing him for have a far better imagination than I do! He’s quite a writer, as you can attest to.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, GP. I enjoyed meeting and visiting with John at a book festival. Very interesting and talented man.

  3. Pingback: Five Things to Remember as a New Writer – Maryann Writes

  4. What a fantastic review of John’s book. You nailed it, Maryann!! I haven’t seen you in years and it’s great to connect through your blog!

    1. Thanks for the kind words about my review, Jan. I, too, am happy that we have social media outlets with which to stay connected to friends that we don’t see in person often enough.

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