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Another Broken Wizard

3.17  ·  Rating details ·  337 ratings  ·  50 reviews
Another Broken Wizard is the story of Jim Monaghan, who really didn't want to go back to Worcester. But unemployment and his father's open-heart surgery forced his hand. Tending to his father and embarking on an ICU romance in the day, Jim seeks out his childhood best friend, Joe Rousseau. But Joe has problems with a local gang, and his plan to resolve the matter only make ...more
Paperback, 282 pages
Published August 8th 2011 by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform (first published July 29th 2011)
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Average rating 3.17  · 
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 ·  337 ratings  ·  50 reviews

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Jul 16, 2013 rated it really liked it

The second-wave rite-of-passage story (ie late twenties as opposed to late teens) has been done a lot lately. But if you want a solid example of the genre, go with Another Broken Wizard. Dodds has done an outstanding job painting a poignant, utterly unselfconscious depiction of growing up.

The story

Jim's in an odd place; late twenties, recently unemployed from a decent job in New York city, and on his way home to Boston to face a Christmas with two recently divorced parents and a soon to be hospi

This book reappeared on my kindle (I had gotten it as a freebie a couple of years back) and I was in between books so decided to give it a try. It was a pretty disappointing read all together. I should have checked out reviews before giving it a shot, but lesson learned. The characters and plot were dull. The story execution was equally bland. Im just surprised I didn’t declare this one a DNF early on - I should have. Not one I'd recommend.
Aug 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
I received a copy of this book from the Goodreads Firstreads giveaway program.

Ok, let me begin by saying I really should read the blurb about the book before signing up to win it as I though this would fall into an entirely different genre from the title. I am glad that I read it as it is probably the best book I've read of the books published in the last year or two.
The story is gritty and urban, with wholly believable characters. Dodds use of prose is at time funny and at times stunning.
This i
Katherine D. Branson
beautifully written

After reading some of the reviews that day this book is about a friend who drinks and does drugs completely missed the point and message of this novel. Dodds has such a magnificent way of eloquently describing the look, feel and smell of things, it is poetic. This story of two people who grew up together and considered themselves brothers took two completely different paths in life and when they are at the face of adversity the way they cope and react are just as different lea
Well, it’s a story but not one that grabbed my attention. It has all the main elements – characters, plot, setting. Out of this, the setting was the strongest. Worcester is the main mover of the story – that’s what grabbed my emotions and I loved the descriptions of this failing city.

Jim is just an OK guy and he hangs out with OK people. None of them are exceptional and none of them are doing anything exceptional. There’s a lot of drugs, drink, and sex. Jim is just cruising through life enjoying
Mar 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Thanks to the author, Colin Dodds, for selecting me as a winner in his giveaway.

It was odd to be reading a book based on an area I had just moved to in March. The main character, Jim, came back to his hometown to be with his dad. His father having surgery and needed someone to stay with him as he recovered. Jim seemed to resent having to be there as he had not spent much time in his hometown in years. He meets up with an old buddy and manages to get involved in some shady dealings. Takes care of
Oct 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Definitely strange reading about my hometown. Also strange seeing an old acquaintance make a cameo. The story itself hit real close to home for me. Guy leaves the Woo to make a new life, then circumstances change and he has to come back. He finds his old friends haven't outgrown the partying, drugs etc and gets caught back up in it. I will admit, I probably wouldn't have rated it 5 stars if it wasn't for the dead-on descriptions/directions to places etc.
Kevin Kosar
Aug 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Can you ever go home?

Worcester, Massachusetts is a long way from Manhattan—economically, socially, and spiritually.

Jim Monaghan, a young business man, grew up there and has mostly escaped it. Until he returns to Worcester...Full review at
Anthony Dibenedetto
Mar 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: most-reread
Steeped in the flavors of a city that never-quite-was, this tragic tale of the bar room hero will leave you with a lingering feeling of reminiscence and remorse.

We all have that friend from our past who's personality could power a truck stop. This is the story of one such man, and his friend that tried to save him.
-Extraordinary storytelling.
Peter J Strauss
Nov 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Drugs, sex, rock and roll..and friendship

A really interesting peak into dead-end subculture that virtually no one escapes unscathed. A not very flattering depiction of a New England town that is firmly on the downhill slope.

Well written with a spare, in-your face style. The author's saving grace is that his cynicism is laced with compassion.
Jan 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
I don't read a lot of contemporary novels but I just couldn't put this one down. Another Broken Wizard follows the painful journey of Jim as he navigates the rocky road to finally step away from his past as it tries to pull him into its spiral of destruction. A powerful story that pulls you into its gritty realism.
Rohit Kilpadi
Aug 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Very good story. Not much of a fan of this genre, but could not put the book down. Good character development, gritty, urban, coming-of-age-a-second-time story. Good insight into growing up in a small town in New England. Really happy to have discovered this author. Looking forward to reading more by Colin Dodds ...more
Rebecca Dauber
Feb 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Jim was a much more complex character than I first thought. I could relate to his struggles with life, responsibilities, growing up, and going home. I didn't see the end coming but yet almost expected what happened to actually happened ..if that makes any sense. A really good read and great descriptions of the you right in as if you're there.
Dec 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good read

I probably would have given this book five stars except for the frequent errors in sentence structure. There were too many sentences with a word missing, or an extra word, or a word in the wrong place.
The story itself was well written and interesting, and overall, I enjoyed reading it.
Cynthia Lobocki
Dec 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
Colin Dodds is a great writer. I usually dont have much time to read but this was one every time I walked by I picked it up to read a few more pages. Finally had to devote some hours to it since it pulled me in.I hope Mr Dodds has much success with this book. I enjoyed it very much.
Sharon Zink
Dec 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
A story of debauchery and friendship. I am thankful to Grace that I escaped this life-style. But you can tell the writer describes places he's been, things he's actually done, and emotions he's actually felt.
Nov 04, 2011 rated it liked it
When I started the book I wasn't sure if it was going to be the right fit, but by the end I had connected with the characters and felt as if Dodds had pulled me into the story line.

Great book!
Feb 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Amazing read. Dodds gives you an honest look into the gritty lives of those still living in Worcester post recession.
Kimmi Bailey
Oct 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: modern-day-novel
A book not soon forgotten. Lots of lessons to be learned of family and friends and life. Just keep tissues ready for the end.
John Kuempel
Dec 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Starts slow, but it made me feel the oppression of Worcester and connected with me in those passages that intimated feelings of futility, being lost, and figuring out who you are.
kathleen r.
Broken Wizards

I'm not sure how I feel about this story other than it seemed the essential lesson or wisdom is wildly skewed from any conventional form of worldliness, wildness or even simple and common exposure. As protagonists go, Jim is flawed by his unwillingness to confront the deliberately reckless and absolutely stupid damaging behavior he sees in his friend, Joe. Jim can see the poorest types of decisions, the worst impulse control and the frenzied denial s of pseudo-intellectual passion
Jul 21, 2019 rated it liked it
This has absolutely nothing to do with wizards (only a small mention about one near the end) but all about a man named Jim. It was basically a diary of Jim’s life when he is in Worcester the place he grew up. He is there as his dad is having open heart surgery and he is there to take care of him. During that time he gets in with his old friend Joe, who is much into drinks and drugs and things take a turn for the worse.
I didn’t think much to this book if I am honest, it didn’t capture me. There w
Jul 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Another Broken Wizard is my first introduction to Colin Dodds’s work. It is one of those books that has quite a unique story line. Which was a little refreshing to have something different to read. There were a few scenes that I was confused or thought was a little slow, but would pick up quickly. I had the pleasure of listening to the audio version and thought the narrator, Curt Bonnem, brought out the best of the book. His performance was great.
I am giving Another Broken Wizard three stars. I
Anita NotherBook
Dec 27, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: 20 somethings and 30 somethings
Recommended to Anita by: BookBub
"Another Broken Wizard" is a coming-of-age story for people nearing their 30's, in which a disheartened guy who had left his hometown for college comes back-- temporarily or maybe permanently-- a decade or so later, only to realize that some things never change. It belongs to the generation of 20-somethings and 30-somethings experiencing unexpected unemployment, parental divorce, and dreams and goals that, even if fulfilled, never amounted to much.

I so wanted to leave a glowing review of this bo
Dec 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: novels
December 30, 2014

A Review by Anthony T. Riggio of the novel Another Broken Wizard by Colin Dodds

When I started this book, I thought it would be entertaining and a fun read. Was I wrong!

The author is, undoubtedly a Massachusetts/Boston native, as you can almost immediately discern who insures that you understand the English being spoken by the main character of this book. Jim Monoghan returns from New York because his father must have a serious operation and since his parents’ divorce, he is the
Feb 25, 2017 rated it did not like it
I only finished it because I had nothing better to do.
Andrew Ferrell
Mar 14, 2016 rated it it was ok
Colin Dodds gives us a glimmer of a story here, but it falls flat for many reasons. The biggest of these is personal growth. The ebook itself was formatted well and I didn't catch too many spelling/grammatical errors that ripped me out of the story.

The story revolves around two friends, Jim and Joe. Jim is your typical small town boy moved on. He leaves Massachusetts, gets a job in New York City and things are going well. Until he is laid off and he returns to his hometown to take care of his fa
Jan 26, 2017 rated it did not like it
Firstly, I am not the target audience for this book. The characters hate the sort of person I am and state it throughout the book, which makes it especially hard to empathize with them when their bad decisions lead to bad places. The narrator, Jim, is himself the sort of person that his friends would presume to hate and this causes him some measure of internal conflict, but Jim isn't really a strong enough character to offer counterpoint. The message seems to be that America rewards those who ar ...more
Colin Dodds
Sep 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Another Broken Wizard is a book about straddling childhood and adulthood, straddling a fading industrial home town and the information-economy world of our attenuated aspirations, straddling the love for a friend and the urge toward self preservation. It is a portrait of Worcester, Massachusetts—both its place in the 21st century and its past.

“Dodds gets Worcester and shows it in all of its glories and cracks…He runs through the streets of the city and nearby towns and takes the reader with him
Originally posted on Jun 21 2012 at Butterfly-o-Meter Books:

I got to about 25% of this before giving up.

The writing is light and pleasant, accessible. It's that sort of first person narrative that's really focused on what's going on with our MC and his close ones. The characters seem promising, flawed, imperfect, human. I kept reading for a while expecting for something major to happen, but it didn't quite feel like it did. I waited until I got to this 21% point of the read, and from there on I
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Colin Dodds is a writer. He grew up in Massachusetts and lived in California briefly, before finishing his education in New York City. Since then, he’s made his living as a journalist, editor, copywriter and video producer. His poems, short stories and essays have appeared in more than three hundred publications, been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Best of the Net Anthology. He is the au ...more

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