For the 10th anniversary of the One Book One Brant event, No Relation has been chosen as a community reading project. This endeavour is to promote reading and discussion of the novel which is written by Canadian, Terry Fallis. The author will join the community participants for discussion on March1st.
The novel begins with a copywriter getting fired from his job. He returns home, only to find that his girlfriend is moving out. This all happens the day after he loses his wallet adding to his stress. He attempts to replace his driver’s license and ends up on youtube after a fight with the clerk over his name – Earnest Hemmingway! He has struggled for years with this moniker which although spelled differently sounds the same as the famous author Ernest Hemingway.
As he struggles with writer’s block, he blames this on his namesake and decides to seek out others with the same name issue and ends up starting a support group at the Y. He ends up meeting others such as Marie Antoinette, Mahatma Ghandi and Diana Ross, being surprised at the number of new friends that he meets with similar name challenges.
At the same time, Earnest, or Hem, as he goes by is dealing with family issues. His father, of course named Earnest Hemingway the third, is pressuring Hem to join the legacy of the family underwear business. Hem has never been interested in the business and has difficult telling his father while his younger sister has been ignored while preparing herself for the position.
A tour of Ernest Hemingway past homes takes place (interestingly he stayed in the Clarion Hotel in Toronto where there is still a Hemingway Room), business espionage, humorous name incidents and romance fill the pages. Although I enjoyed the novel, I did find it a bit slow in the beginning and wish that the business espionage was expanded upon. The topic was unique and the narrator shared “in case it wasn’t obvious, I like a nice neat package in the end, with all the lose ends tied up, nothing outstanding“. This goal was fulfilled.
I am looking forward to meeting the author and if anyone else is interested, there is still time before the meet the author event on March 1 @ 1pm, (Brant Sports Complex).