Short, Sweet, and Snappy Review:
Title: A Reasonable Man
Author: Oscar Hughes
What I liked: The message of the story
What I didn’t like: The beginning
Recommended Read: Yes
Rating: 4 Stars
The short story explores the unforeseen reality of the American Dream as it depicts the conflict between sacrifice and success.
I read this short story over the holidays, and once I got past the start of it, I really enjoyed it. Now, it’s not the sort of story I would normally pick out of a line up; it isn’t full of death, doom, gloom, and body parts. However, it conveyed a message that I found not only profoundly accurate, but also enlightening.
There was only one downfall to this story, and that was the start. When the story opens, the action and character’s dialogue gets very confusing. At times it is hard to tell who is speaking, to whom they are speaking, and what exactly is going on. But this only lasts a page or two, and once you are past the rocky beginning, everything evens out nicely and becomes a lot clearer.
So what exactly is the story about, and why was it so enjoyable? Well, the synopsis says it all; A conflict between sacrifice and success. Some people will give up everything in order to attain what they consider success, but it isn’t always worth it. In today’s world, where everyone is so driven to make money, buy a house, have kids, and work towards this idealised life, I think this story highlights exactly what the consequences of such a life can be. For me, it is a well written story that accurately portrays what people think is the perfect life, and what that life actually entails.
Overall, I give it four stars. Short stories with morals may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but this is well worth the read.
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