Reviewed by: Keith Nixon
Approximate word count: 30-35,000 words
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Edmund Christopher McCombs was born in Florida before moving to Australia where he still resides.
You can learn more about the author at his website.
stuck.at.seven is a series of short stories where the author recounts embarrassing situations from his life.
I’ve reviewed a few humor books previously, with mixed success. To re-use a phrase, humor is a personal perspective. What makes one person laugh, doesn’t raise a chuckle with another. Unfortunately with stuck.at.seven I fell into the latter segment.
I actually found the tale to be quite sad. The author recounts problems in childhood and in particular at school and attempts to turn them into a joke through the recounting. It didn’t quite work for me, they still came over as gloomy. Perhaps it was an attempt at some constructive therapy?
stuck.at.seven is well written, McCombs puts his situation over well. I liked him (even though he felt a bit damaged) meaning he connected with me. The early chapters are largely the author discussing embarrassing sexual situations he got himself into with porn or swearing. For me the best section is when McCombs moves to Australia (having been previously unfulfilled in education, work and location). The book becomes more autobiographical and, rather than turning everything into a joke, shifts to being more lighthearted.
Again I stress that some people will find this very funny (there is a section on Australian phrases that don’t translate well in American, as we Brits use pretty much all of them I couldn’t laugh much, others may differ). Humor is subjective.
Adult situations and swearing.
Rating: *** Three Stars