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Shattered Wings Paperback – April 19, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
What do you do when your life is turned tragically upside down? In Shattered Wings, we are introduced to a family--John, his spouse Charlie, and their adopted daughter Cassie. While Charlie works at home to be with their daughter, John is a white collar worker with a secure job. Until it isn't. Laid off in the dwindling economy, John decides to not tell Charlie. In a series of flashbacks, we are thrust into feeling his desperation as job interviews come and go, the memories of his meeting Charlie, and welcoming their daughter. His fears thrust him back into a life that could end in tragedy.
I was struck by the stark cover of Healey's book--always a promising sign. I was not disappointed. Healey has written a very timely novel that literally moved me to tears--which is hard to do and to me, signifies a book that not only satisfies but lingers in my head. His style of writing is lyrical but not overdone.
One sign of his brilliant talent is that when I began reading, I envisioned the narrator to be a woman. It's only a few pages in do I realize that this is a gay couple. I went back to the beginning to re-read so that I had the right picture in my head. But truly, aside from a few places in the book, John and Charlie are "every family" and quite accessible to any reader. I find it wonderful, as a bisexual woman, to find a novel that is modern and mainstream and doesn't need to feel like it has to be different because it features a gay couple.
A bit of a tongue-in-cheek warning: there are no chapters. So if you're a voracious reader like I am, you may find yourself devouring this book far too quickly or staying up into the wee hours of the morning.Read more ›
John has a drinking problem. In order to keep his partner, Charlie, and his daughter, Cassie--his family--John stops drinking but struggles to remain abstinent. Then, apparently a victim of the recent economic crisis, he loses his job.
The bookends to Healey's story seem quite right to me. The beginning immediately arouses dread. The ending boldly goes, in the confessional first person no less, where many writers would lack the courage to go.
Reading Shattered Wings is like viewing an Ed Norton movie, where we're thinking, we love you, man; you don't need to do what you're doing to yourself. Does his character hear our plea? Of course not. He's on the screen in a magnificent fall. We're on our couch.
Those of us who read and admire thoughtful, serious fiction know a John. We sometimes see him when we look in our mirrors. I readily gave him the benefit of every doubt, even as he refused to do what I wanted him to do. His struggle, emanating from his father's rejection, is too familiar and true for him not to capture our sympathy as if it were prey.
Readers should know that Healey handles his "sex" scenes with admirable restraint. I found it good to know that, yeah, John and Charlie are very much in love with one another that way, too. But Healey wisely knows he doesn't have to provide a play-by-play account in this kind of story.Read more ›
In his book, Bryan Healey tackles the demons and obsessions challenging the alcoholic. He brings to vivid light the tragedy of the alcohol addiction. In a literary style that is both simple and masterful, his description of what true alcoholism is and what it does to people is deeply disturbing and unforgettable.
Shattered Wings is a tale of one man's descent into alcoholism. John seems to have everything going for him. He has a well-paying white-collar job, loving partner and beautiful daughter. Together with his family he lives a harmonious and prosperous life in a suburban house in upper New York. He's a successful man, content with what he has. Until one day it all comes tumbling down when John is released from his job due to the downsizing of the company he works for. Determined to salvage the situation on his own, he decides to keep the layoff a secret from his partner, until he finds a new job. But finding it isn't as easy as he first thought it would be. No one seems to be interested in hiring a laid-off worker who dedicated 13 years of his life to one company. Apparently his loyalty means nothing more than experience deficiency and not enough exposure to a broader range of skills. As days pass by and there's still very little prospect of getting hired, an overpowering sense of hopelessness sinks John to the bottom of the bottle.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Bryan Healey sets out in Shattered Wings to present the sad tale of a man beaten down by his circumstances and leaves the reader wondering if he deserved his lot in life. Read morePublished on January 4, 2013 by Read2Review
Shattered Wings is a story of job loss and the destruction that follows. Recovered alcoholic John is an executive and is his family's breadwinner. Read morePublished on April 15, 2012 by LH422
What a waste of a good writer. I liked Mr. Healey's writing style but the plot of this story was just dumb. Read morePublished on January 11, 2012 by Happy mama
I struggled with this text - big time. After completing the reading of the text, I reread the last five pages and the first five pages. Read morePublished on December 25, 2011 by Frank D. Adams
Despite the slow signs of recovery, the Global Financial Crisis continues to impact heavily on society. Read morePublished on November 1, 2011 by Shelleyrae
Love fails in light of job loss and depression.
The real agony felt when one loses a job and its devastating effects on his or her family is too often a common... Read more
Overcoming so much in his life, John had finally found happiness with his partner Charlie and their adopted daughter Cassie. Read morePublished on July 31, 2011 by onyx95
This is a very good book. Very well written and very well believable. You can easily imagine the characters. Read morePublished on July 28, 2011 by Chantale F
This one I thought would be a bit difficult for me to read. So many of us right now are struggling with losing our jobs, not having the money to make ends meet, and all the other... Read morePublished on June 25, 2011 by Jennifer