By: Tom Pointer
Publisher: Tom Pointer
Publication Date: August 2014
Reviewed by: Anita Lock
A fluke incident turns a stranger into an overnight hero in author Tom Pointer’s one-of-a-kind read.
William “Rooster” Brown has nefarious motives at the time the notorious Blackwell brothers enter Mel’s Truck Stop, and he puts a stop to their deadly plans. A newcomer to Merky, Texas, Rooster shifts gear and uses his grandfather’s pistol to kill the brothers. Even though the newcomer to Merky thwarted a possible mass shooting, Rooster considers himself to be a murderer. The locals, notably Mel Tucker, the town mogul, think otherwise, earmarking him a hero. Mel Tucker, who is overly grateful since Rooster saves his daughter Laura from impending rape, is indebted to him, bending over backward to help him in every way possible. As a result, Rooster lands a job, a lovely home, and eventually marries Laura. Rooster’s luck continues when the lovebirds return from their honeymoon, and he learns that he is slated to run for sheriff. The only problem is that he has to run against the one person who is dead-against Rooster because of his ties with his law-breaking grandfather Devil Brown: Sherriff Hickey.
Pointer spins an unusual story. Set in the 1950s with a western bent, One Lucky Foolfeatures an unlikely character whose corrupt intentions unwittingly morph into an optimistic future. While placing an underdog with a sad past front-and-center in his near 550-page plot, Pointer surrounds Rooster with a small but colorful cast that frequently functions as foils to help develop Rooster’s character.
The plot follows a seemingly circuitous flow, but for a good reason. Underneath Rooster’s humility is a self-denigrating man, who believes deep down that hypocrisy masks his good fortune. Indeed, Rooster is riddled with flaws, and Pointer makes sure to highlight the dark side of this improbable figure who is quietly trying to overcome his low self-esteem. Amid Rooster’s introspection, Pointer balances his narrative with “bumps in the road,” which not only translate into Rooster’s ills and periodic poor decision-making but also the confrontations he has with a handful of surly antagonists.
Idiomatic writing reflects the 1950s scenery, replete with women’s insufferable roles within a patriarchal social structure. That said, clichés are expected, especially in regards to the responses from the supporting cast, such as encouraging and often idealistic comments from locals who support Rooster as opposed to the lowly and insensitive remarks from his non-supporters. While some readers might have an issue with occasional wordiness, Pointer keeps his plot fluid by sprinkling unanticipated scenes with a few red herrings thrown in.
Quill says: Closing on a satisfying note, One Lucky Fool is the perfect read for those who are looking for a refreshing narrative twist.