3 out of 4 stars
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Guardian of Deceit by William H. Coles is a coming of age story about an orphaned boy named Darwin Hastings. The book starts with Darwin who is travelling from Pittsburg to New York to live with his famous cousin named Luther. And while on the plane to New York he meets Dr Malverne who becomes an important part of his career and future.
Darwin's new guardian, Luther is a famous athlete and a reckless man with a gambling problem. He has a drug and drinking problem and to top it up he is arrogant and self-serving. On their very first meeting, Luther is determined to make Darwin's life hard, even though Darwin's parents left him a sustainable income in the form of a trust, he refuses to give Darwin his allowance and makes him work for it instead, by doing odd jobs for Luther like driving him around and washing his cars.
Life in Luther's mansion is not all that bad as Darwin quickly adjusts and makes friends along the way. He gets into a school of his choice even though at the beginning Luther had discouraged him. With the help of Dr Malverne of course, who comes to regard Darwin as the son he never had. At the mansion, Darwin strikes up a friendship with Luther's famous singer girlfriend Sweeney Pale and the two get along very well. Darwin also gets to meet Laszlo who is in charge of security. Laszlo likes Drawing and takes him under his wing and teaches him a few things like driving and self-defence.
The author does a good job creating a multi-layered storyline with a lot of twists and turns which keeps the reader engaged throughout.The book also has a mixture of very interesting characters who are well developed and easy to relate to. My own favourite was, of course, Darwin who is the protagonist in this story. I like Darwin because he made the best out of the cards he was dealt. Whereas Luther was a bad influence on him, Darwin still managed to stick to his morals. He stayed in school and kept up the pursuit of his dream to become a doctor. I think we can all learn something from Darwin's perseverance.
The relationships between the various characters in the book all serve to strengthen the plot. This well-paced and well-written book serves to entertain and inspire a reader through twist and turns, loaded with mystery, ambition, deceit, unrequited love and scandal. I had nothing but pure admiration for Darwin's determination and resourcefulness in the face of all the adversities and challenges he faced.
I rate this book a 3 out of 4 stars because of the errors and the layout which sometimes skipped a blank page at the beginning of the chapter. I recommend it to readers who like inspiring stories loaded with mystery, perseverance, tragedy and romance.
Guardian of Deceit
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