Sunday, July 20, 2014
Love begins with a smile, grows with a kiss and ends with a teardrop.
In "The Drop," Dennis Lehane brings the readers back to the Boston area of his novel, "Mystic River."
The story opens shortly after Christmas where a group of customers gather at a bar, Cousin Marv's, to celebrate the life of a friend who disappeared ten years ago.
Bob Saginowski is the bartender at Cousin Marv's. When he's on his way home, he hears a whimpering sound and finds an injured puppy that was abandoned in a dumpster. As he's rescuing the puppy, a woman, Nadia, raises her window and demands that he gets out of her garbage. In this way, Bob meets Nadia and when she learns what he was doing, she becomes more friendly.
Bob is a loner who attends daily Mass but never receives communion.There is something in his past that prevents him in receiving communion and we wonder what it is.
Bob's boss is cousin Marv and when Marv orders him to take down the Christmas decorations on December 27th, we learn what we need to know of him. He also shows himself to be a Scrooge when he objects to Bob's running an endless tab for a lonely senior who spends most of her time at the bar.
I enjoyed the discussion of the closing of Bob's church for commercial purposes. With dwindling attendance and advancing age of many priests, there is a problem in the Catholic Church. Many parishes are forced to close and combine with another parish.
Bob is an interesting character. His solitary life reminded me of the character in the 1950's movie, Marty. The warmhearted butcher in that film seemed like Bob who admits that he really didn't have any friends before Nadia. I also sympathized with him as his pride grew in having a puppy depend on him. Then, the owner of the dog appeared and wanted the dog back.
Eric Deeds is a character who just got out of prison. When he's released he travels to see the man who was his protector in jail. Eric intended to get some drugs from this man and then sell the drugs up north. The scene of what transpires at this man's home was powerfully written and vividly described.
There are a number of surprises and twists to the story which make the reader unable to foresee where the story is going.
Being a New Englander, I liked the Boston setting and sympathised with Bob. I wish the characters of Marv, Eric and Nadia had more to them so I could learn why they behaved as they did.
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