GUD Magazine's Reviews > I Will Rise

I Will Rise by Michael Louis Calvillo
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Jun 02, 08

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Charlie works as a line chef in a seafood restaurant. Since birth, he's been plagued by an odd growth in the palm of his left hand and seizures that are apparently triggered there, rather than in the brain. He's unhappy with himself, with his job, with his life, and has turned inwards, hating himself and everyone else. Yet under his loathsome (at least by his own account) exterior, there's a man desperately seeking his place in the world. And if God won't give it to him, then he'll find it for himself.

For the first forty-five pages or so of this novel, nothing much happens. Instead of a plot, we're treated to an apparently endless stream-of-consciousness tirade from the first person narrator. There's some important information about page twenty-nine, where mystery woman Annabelle first appears, but apart from that, you won't lose much by skipping straight to page forty-seven and reading from there.

Even then, there's a lot of repetition, needless introspection and time-wasting what-shall-i-dos, but at least stuff is happening. Weird stuff. Spooky stuff. Almost weird and spooky enough to be worth tolerating the overwritten and at times turgid narration. But not quite.

In the hands of a more experienced writer and an editor with an endless supply of red pens, this story could have become something intriguing and perhaps genuinely frightening. At present, everything good about it is overwhelmed by what's bad.
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