“Boiled Peanuts” is a perversely delightful novel, quirky and original. Not for the narrow-minded or easily-shocked, but a refreshing change of pace from mass-market genre, and a treat for the serious reader. The author has an extremely facile hand with words, and his sharp, charmingly off-beat insights and descriptions are fascinating. Definitely worth a read– and a re-read. – B&N Customer Review
“Boiled Peanuts” is available in paperback at Amazon.Com, Amazon.co.uk, Barnes & Noble, and any other good bookstore. It is also available through the Amazon Kindle store.
For more information on “Boiled Penauts” plus an excerpt of the first chapter go to http://www.copperhillmedia.com/boiledpeanuts or see the author’s website at http://johnpatrickdoyle.com .
About the Book
Paul Kirk is a librarian and one of his town's quirkier residents. In a childhood home lacking parents (his mother dying of MS and his father an alcoholic) Paul had imagined himself a member of the neighboring family. Now in his late twenties, Paul vicariously participates in the households of his community. His peeping-Tom proclivities express his awkward need for social bonding.
Then Paul meets Bronwyn, a counselor who is lovely, independent and blind. She has inherited her Aunt Phyllis’ house and is newly arrived in town. When Paul first sees Bronwyn at church, he knows he wants to be part of her life.
As the mystery of Aunt Phyllis unfolds, Bronwyn and Paul become more deeply involved as they learn about Phyllis' secrets and how they relate to Bronwyn and her past, but Paul's peeping ways may ruin it all.
About the Author
Born of Irish parents, John Patrick Doyle grew up in London. At the age of 14, entranced by brochures picturing bikini-clad women jogging on Australian dunes, he encouraged his family to emigrate to a sunnier land. He left school at 15 and worked for a telephone company in Sydney, then a warehouse and a bookstore. Having scraped together an education, at 30 he moved to the U.S. and worked as a law librarian in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley in Lexington, Virginia. In 2011, he discontinued paid employment, attracted by the lonely, grinding life of a full-time writer. He and his wife, Mary, have 6 children (3 each), 5 grandchildren and 2 cats.
Paul Kirk thinks of himself as a badly baked loaf of bread, crusty on the outside and underdone inside, and even though still young at age he deems it too late to get back in the oven. But he hopes, seeing Bronwyn, a blind girl who newly arrived in town, will make him a whole loaf.
His mother died of MS when he was eleven. His father is a drunkard, still alive, if you can call it that. Early in his childhood, deprived of parents every other kid in his neighborhood enjoyed, he would press his face against the window of his room, watching the neighboring couple and imagining his life with them. Adopting them as his parents felt like warm, buttered toast.
Later, as an adult, he continues his voyeuristic adventures, which keeps him up-to-date on everything around town, but, eventually, might get him into trouble. Despite his faults, Paul acts well, living on noodles and a dream, a dream called Bronwyn. But he also realizes, telling Bronwyn he is a peeping tom is like tossing a two-headed coin and betting on tails.
Add to this scenario a good portion of mystery in form of Bronwyn’s aunt Phyllis’ diary, spanning from her childhood into adult life and revealing shocking details that will change Bronwyn’s life forever.
With “Boiled Peanuts” Irish-born author John Patrick Doyle challenges the secret voyeur in all of us. Is peeping on your neighbors wrong? Aren’t we all voyeuristic, peeping into somebody else’s life by reading a book describing not only their life but also their most private secrets? Or to reverse the point of view, doesn’t peeping on your neighbors have the same level of excitement and satisfaction like reading a good book?
“Boiled Peanuts” is written with a great portion of (apolitical) Leonard-Wibberley-strength wit and observing and writing skills. I thoroughly enjoyed peeping on Paul Kirk’s life, joining him during his peeping endeavors, and being involved in a mystery hunt. Reading “Boiled Peanuts” was a feast filled with joy and excitement. It is definitely a 5 Star read!