“Pacific Odyssey” by Chet Nairene

“Pacific Odyssey” is out-and-out Romantic Comedy. It is so romantic it leaves reality and moves into the Fantasy realm, and we step into a world where truth takes a back seat to fancy.

Put in traditional terms, this is the quintessential Hero’s Journey. Lew is a typical high-rolling young up-and-coming executive with the world at his feet. However, it is obvious that the world he is so successful in holds the worst of capitalist character qualities; greed, materialism and the law of the jungle reign supreme. We quickly realize that Lew may be on the fast track to success, but he is selling his soul in the process.

So, Fate must step in and save him from himself. He must be stripped of the trappings of his mercenary life so he can be rebuilt into the person he could become.

The old Existentialists would have loved this decline. Financially, socially, geographically, electronically and finally physically he is reduced to the essential nugget of his soul, and we find out what he’s really like.

Unfortunately, the reader is clued in pretty quickly as to what is happening. For the first third of the story, we know he has hit the skids, and we know his destination is oblivion, so there isn’t much suspense.

The entertainment comes from the process by which he takes his dive, which is creative to say the least. The settings change as he works his way downward, and each one is striking and vivid. Likewise, the people divide in moral stature as his old world peels away. The good guys are warm and believable, and the bad guys become exaggerated versions of stereotypical evil.

Once he hits bottom and starts working his way into becoming a new person, his character and the plot get more interesting. Enter a beautiful heroine threatened by a voracious, amoral businessman, and the tale starts to be all sorts of fun.

The odds are completely stacked against him, so the main conflict in the story is always, “How is he going to manage that?” And basically, it’s the author we’re talking about. Often it seems impossible to get Lew out of the trouble he’s in, but every time the objective slides out of reach, Mr. Nairene simply moves the goal posts, and suddenly all seems possible again.

This story cannot have anything but a happily-ever-after ending, and that’s no spoiler. It’s that kind of book.

Great characters and a completely unbelievable plot, but who cares? Recommended for fans of Fantasy and Romance.

4 stars.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.