I looked at the title of Nathaniel Lande’s new book and thought, no publisher sticks a book with a title that long and promising unless they’re really confident about the story inside.
So with a lot of titles competing for my attention these days, I took a leap of faith with The Life and Times of Homer Sincere Whose Amazing Adventures are Documented by His True and Trusted Friend Rigby Canfield.
Good bet: I couldn’t put it down.
The story, which picks up in New Orleans with the friendship of two young boys, Homer and Rigby, shortly after World War II, and takes them around the world and all the way through adulthood, never lags and is always well told.
NATHANIEL LANDE podcast excerpt: “Mark Twain used to have a very lengthy title after The Adventures of Tom Sawyer or The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. He went on with the subtitle much like I have done.”
It reminded me a lot of another novel I enjoyed immensely: Michael Chabon’s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay—but without most of the sex.
As for the author, Nathaniel Lande, he is the author of 10 books, but is probably best known as a founding director of TIME-Life Films and the holder of two critical patents that sped the invention of electronic books.
In a curious approach, I think it’s safe to say that much of Homer and Rigby’s adventures were clearly drawn from Lande’s life.