Let It Be

Chad Gayle

Published by Bracket BooksLet It Be (A Novel) [Slide]


220 pages

Reviewed by Laura Hartman

Genre: Fiction

Michelle leaves her husband for the second time with her son Joseph and daughter Pam. They move to “flat, dry” side of Texas, near her brother, Chuck. Joseph hates the tiny two-bedroom home his mother rents. He hates his sister being in charge during the day while their mother works as a secretary. And most of all he hates being away from his father, Bill.

The days turn into weeks as Pam adjusts after finding a neighborhood girl she can hang out with. Joseph, still unhappy, finds comfort by withdrawing into his room to sketch pictures of superheroes, dinosaurs and the occasional nude. He is biding his time until he can go live with his father.

Bill soon shows his true colors when he comes to pick up the kids for a visit and roughs up Michelle when she angers him. Joseph is too young to understand the implications of his father’s actions; he still hopes and plans to be with his father as soon as possible.

Michelle meets a man that makes her smile again, but Joseph cannot or will not see the reasons why she would leave his father or start dating. The sacrifices she has made to keep her family safe are not yet evident to her youngest child. However, she does what she has to do to keep her family safe and happy, even at her own expense.

Chad Gayle’s debut novel pulls the reader into the lives of Michelle, Pam and Joseph with one of the best opening lines I’ve read, “When my brother was ten years old, he almost killed a man.”. I had to find out how a young boy could almost kill someone. Was it intentional? Was it an accident? But most of all, why?

Gayle masterfully wove the point of view back and forth between his main characters. The chapters are set to the tracks of The Beetles’ Let It Be album. The songs are the soundtrack and salvation of his characters. It was impossible to get McCartney’s voice out of my head as I read this book. References to the lyrics in comparison to the character’s lives made the book deeper and connected me by music to them.

I am looking forward to Gayle’s next novel, wondering if it will be based upon a different album, group, or something entirely different. Either way he has proven to be a writer whose works I want to read more of.

Copyright © 2013 Laura Hartman

DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy that I can keep for consideration in preparing to write this content. I was not expected to return this item after my review.