This is the story of Ben, a janitor with an affinity for prime numbers.
Told in Ben's voice and perfectly seasoned with humor, Prime of Life is great for reading aloud with a friend, which is what I did.
Together we learned that Ben spends his days dealing with crises all over Heritage Gardens Retirement Home- some of them janitorial and most of them interpersonal. Whether it is removing a chicken bone from a beautiful and loquacious lady's garbage disposal or trying to suppress revenge plans after a tabasco-flavored denture cream incident, he is stuck in the middle of pranks and love triangles everywhere he turns.
Keeping up with the residents leaves him almost no time to think about his past life, until a sharp-eyed octogenarian finds out one of his secrets: Ben was a cardiothoracic surgeon recently turned janitor, and he doesn't like to talk about the reasons why.
This book is rollicking. That's really the best word I have for it.
With loud-mouthed Frank and the keen and kind Professor, and scheming slimy Junior, and sweet as peaches Betty Boop, and Ben himself who is an extremely likable fellow, Prime of Life is peopled with great characters. When I'm laughing and sighing and fearful that someone is not going to be alright, you know it's a good book. And when I'm reading aloud and I hear audible gasps of surprise at certain plot twists, and then next minute you're holding your breath, and then you laughing again, well you know this is a "Hey everyone, you've gotta read this" book.
Add in Ben's refreshing honesty about how lonely life can be sometimes when we're all trapped in our own skin, stir in some of the constant bickering between Frank and his arch-rival Marvin, toss in an avacado sandwich, then mix in an impromptu road trip with a carload of those aforementioned men and women, and you've got yourself Prime of Life. Except it's way better than I can describe.
So go find out for yourself, please.
Thank you to Worthy's FirstLook program for my review copy.
Author and practicing eye surgeon. Happily married, proud father of two boys. Proceeds from my writing go to help fund my activites in developing countries as I work to bring cataract surgery to the needlessly blind. Feel free to contact me at PDBekendam@gmail.com