"Colorado Mandala from poet BrianHeffron...a novel of the 70's recommended for fans of literaryfiction...dialog & descriptions are exquisite, pairing a sense ofplace with a sense of character...a fine mesh of intricate, accurate& sensual description...Gripping writing, solid descriptions offriendships, relationships, changes, and the vivid setting of Colorado's wilderness byways: these facets make Colorado Mandala a tapestry of light, sound and color perfect for readers seeking evocative, compelling stories of journey and inspiration."--- Diane Donovan, Midwest Book Review©
"Colorado Mandala is an intricate chain of literary fiction...The novel fuses poetic verse with gritty contemporary dialogue and solves conflict with love. From spelunking to cock fights, readers won’t imagine what’s coming next. The author stretches the paradigms of romance by magnifying love as misshapen but uniquely perfect for friend and amour. At the beginning and end of each chapter, the author holds the reader aloft by a perspective crafted with exquisite diction to foreshadow a scene or thought. Then abruptly the literary rug is pulled away to join his first person perspective. The plot is eclectic. Conflicts are resolved in a true to life way. Those who love the art of the written word will probably agree this work may quite likely be genius, but most definitely not mundane. The pant-o-meter may not be breathing heavy, but it is transmitting a response resembling an unsteady heartbeat ."-- NataszaWaters--- In D'Tale Magazine©
"Colorado Mandala is a fabulous tale of love, honor, friendship and thepsychological morass of Viet Nam Vets; their private codes, theirimpenetrable camaraderie...The plot has been carefully...drawn and readers of all ages...will appreciate this tale.
---Stefanie Stolinsky, Ph.D, is a psychologist & a nationally recognized expert in the fields of trauma and PTSD.
From the Author
"Colorado Mandala comes frompoet Brian Heffron, who departs from his established genre with a novelof the seventies recommended for fans of literary fiction. The novelopens with an eloquent preface explaining the author's early attraction(at age twelve) to hitchhiking, an occupation that leads to journeysthroughout America:
"This connection to highways, and journeys onthem, may be because I was born the summer Congress passed the FederalHighway Act. I came in with the highways and have actually grown up onthem; my New Jersey suburb had a major national highway route runningright alongside its border. This meant that total geographic,continental freedom was only one bold, usually cold, thumb ride away."
Each new ride leads to encounters with strangers, new fables and legends,and different perceptions of love and connection which form foundationsfor the fictional experiences (based on fact) described in ColoradoMandala.
This book is all about shared connections, different visions of love, and a journey through America that vividly connects strangersand places.
Its dialog and descriptions are exquisite, pairing asense of place with a sense of character and linking the two with a fine mesh of intricate, accurate and sensual description:
"A narrowingcanyon: deep, long and slim, with fluted columns of red sandstone andbrickish dented walls. Yellow cinquefoils blooming from niches bob inthe noonday breeze. Within the canyon is a fast stream so filled withrocks and boulders that the water can hardly find a course. The bank isclay and has retreated with the burden of the spring run-off. Along thesouthern shore is a roadbed; beside it a flock of brewer's blackbirdsfeed on ticks and water spiders. Their hollow white eyes snap to at thefirst rumble of an approaching vehicle."
Heffron's use of the firstperson is an added bonus, taking full advantage of the protagonist'sobservations of and experiences with his world and its variousinteractions, and will delight readers looking for a 'you are there'feel in their reading.
From canyons filled with climbing, nature, and water adventures to bars, drinking, and bad debts, Colorado Mandalamoves swiftly and easily between very different atmospheres, carryingreaders like a river through the eddies, undercurrents, and compellingmystery of human interactions.
There are cave explorations andcockfighting, there's debt and repayment, wilderness encounters, and the coming together of different peoples and personalities - all setagainst the backdrop of Colorado's natural wonders.
As the storyevolves, readers become immersed in the journey, changing relationshipsbetween very different protagonists, and an evolving pressure of pastupon present which eventually transforms lives and personalities alike:
"I never believed it possible, but now, in this high wilderness timberclear-cut, there was something I had never seen before in my formerpartner's eyes: murder...as he approached, I remembered anotherclearing, a clearing not in my life, but in his. A far away jungleclearing that he fought in a long, long time ago. A clearing he hadnever really left behind. And I thought, 'Here is my best friend. Myfinest, and most loyal friend, even if there are occasional fisticuffs,here he is out of his mind with a toxic dose of long-held, misplacedguilt: a killing in the past that so devastated him that he is willingto commit a murder in the present to cover it up. Madness.'"
Gripping writing, solid descriptions of friendships, relationships and changes,and the vivid setting of Colorado's wilderness byways: these facets make Colorado Mandala a tapestry of light, sound and color perfect forreaders seeking evocative, compelling stories of journey andinspiration.
--- Diane Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review