Treasure of the Blue Whale
Connor O’Halloran is just ten years old on that auspicious day in 1934 in the small California coastal town of Tesoro when he outraces the old lighthouse keeper, Angus MacCallum, to a smelly mass washed up on the beach. Little does Connor know how much this will change the town. It is ambergris, a disgusting mass vomited by whales, prized by perfumers, necessary to make fine perfumes. It is worth its weight in gold — literally. Connor decides the whole town should share in this good fortune. When Cyrus Dinkel, the richest (and most despicable) man in town hears of it, he offers to loan everybody $10,000 against their share. What could possibly go wrong?
Author Steven Mayfield chooses to tell this depression-era story in first-person point-of-view in the voice of a ninety-year-old Connor O’Halloran looking back on his youth. This is pretty effective, but Connor seems often to wander into the territory of an omniscient narrator, knowing things there is no way he could know. The story is compelling though overly-long and in need of a good trim, but the writing is good and the characters interesting and well-rounded.
|Regal House Publishing
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