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Muscle Memory - Steve Lowe

Back story: I bought this book for the right reasons—the author is a Goodreads friend whose generous offer to use the proceeds from its sales to help kids appealed to me, and other GR friends (and GR reviewers whose reviews I stalk) have liked it.

Further Back Story: I don’t consider myself a genre-reader and try to avoid the ruts of travelling the genre-road. Consequently, reading titles in a series where the word Bizarro figures prominently was, well, let’s just say that reading them wasn’t urgent.

Forward Story: Concern about getting behind with the GR 2111 Reading Challenge had me looking for a title that could be accomplished quickly, so a 62-pager was compelling for all the wrong reasons: I was looking for a couple ‘quickies’ that would free-up time for some of the longer titles on my TBR list, and I’m still a new-enough GR reader that I like seeing the numbers in my stats change. So, like Henry Wilcox in Howards End, “there it is.” [I hear this in Anthony Hopkins’ voice to feel slightly better about myself]

Way-Back-to-Now Story: My partner and I have been together for 32 years. This June, we’ll be ‘tying the knot’ as recent changes to Illinois law will go into effect and we’ll be entitled to a ‘receipt.’ Why does this matter? What does it have to do with Muscle Memory? Well, because…

The Story: Muscle Memory deals with the nature of relationships: things taken for granted, signs unnoticed or misread—the everyday challenges to any relationship. That MM does so in a humorous tale whose readers may not expect a moral makes the story that much better and more compelling. In the words of one of MM’s characters, and my advice to and hope for Steve: keep playin' that rock and roll.

My experience with the New Bizarro Author Series has been such that other NBAS authors who’ve befriended me had better be prepared for reviews of their books coming to a GR shelf near you—and (don’t tell anyone), I’m actually kinda lookin’ forward to them.

So Far Back That It Doesn’t Matter Much Story: I was gonna’ give this book 4 stars but decided Screw It: 4 stars for the book and a 5th star for the author’s good heart—I’ve got more stars layin’ around here somewhere and he’s welcome to those too. Lowe will now take his place on my shelves between London and Malamud, not bad company .