BOOK REVIEW: How do you feel sorry for a man with everything?
LAST DAY IN THE DYNAMITE FACTORY
AUTHOR: Anna Faulkner
PUBLISHER: Picador, RRP $32.99
REVIEWER: Jessica McKenzie
HOW do you feel sorry for the man who has everything?
Anna Faulkner's protagonist Chris is a respected Brisbane architect with movie-star good looks, a devoted wife and happy children.
His adoptive parents provided him with a blissful childhood - apart from that one time he witnessed the grisly death of a family member in a freak accident.
It's not enough to explain the dissatisfaction Chris feels with his life and the people who love him.
A revelation about his biological father sends Chris into a tailspin and leaves the reader behind, wondering 'Who cares?'.
Chris's world is populated by two-dimensional characters lifted straight from an Eighties sitcom - from the jocular best friend to the bimbo receptionist.
The clunky dialogue is just taking up space in this novel which drags for the first 200 pages.
All the drama is happening inside Chris's head.
Throughout the book, Chris agonises over his career, his marriage and his relationship with his adoptive father.
In the book's sappy, romantic ending, the man who has everything finds his happily-ever-after.