A Man Finds His Way
A MAN FINDS HIS WAY is the story of Professor Darius Collins, who is trying to keep a balanced life, stay above water and handle all the ill-will that has befallen him of late.
The novel's beginning is a study of why men should work harder to do what is necessary to keep their women happy, and why they should exemplify better methods for creating conciliatory existence. Here's what happens. Collins' girlfriend dumps him, his ex-wife is on a personal vendetta and he is hard-pressed to come up with solutions to deal with the latter when it's disclosed that she is indirectly connected to a former lover. It doesn't help either when he learns that his adolescent son, Jarrod, is accused of rape. The former lover, a corrupt and conniving politician, is attempting to frame the boy via extortion.
The novel moves along with good transition. Johnson does a credible job of juxtaposing various subplots in order to justify timely introductions to upcoming scenarios. There's nice contrast throughout, as the author gives us lighter fare concerning the main character's romantic life at the start, and then proceeds to focus primarily on Jarrod's plight in the latter part of the book. The author's writing style makes you comfortable, hoping for a sustained dramatic interlude in which the serious political and family overtones are not only congruous but are depicted in a way that gives the suspense deeper meaning. Sandwiched between all the mayhem is how the Professor deals with the on-campus issues focusing on race relations, workplace bureaucracies and self-evaluation.
This is Freddie Lee Johnson's second novel with the same formulaic method: depicting a black man doing what is needed to keep his family intact and still be viable in his chosen environment, albeit amid strife and an unfortunate series of events. It is a well-written novel that should elicit familiarity with those who gravitate toward sensitivity --- where the need to make critical decisions to keep a family intact fuels all that is expected for success. If Johnson continues to write with this passion, he could secure a seat among those who have arrived.
Reviewed by Alvin C. Romer on January 1, 2003
A Man Finds His Way
- Publication Date: January 1, 2003
- Genres: Fiction
- Hardcover: 352 pages
- Publisher: One World/Ballantine
- ISBN-10: 0345445988
- ISBN-13: 9780345445988