Mahler, Nicolas – Lone Racer
What’s so great about redemption anyway? That’s the uplifting moral I took from Lone Racer, and three cheers to Nicolas for pointing that out. This is the story of Lone Racer (at least I think that’s his given
name), a racer who’s past his prime and dealing with a wife stuck in the hospital, a constantly drunk best friend and a cop friend who’s on the verge of becoming a criminal. So what’s left to do when you were once
the best at your profession and are now unable even to qualify for races? Well, there’s always the option of having an affair on the invalid wife, if conscience will allow it. Or there’s a life of crime. Or, of course, he could always try to make a comeback. The art here could only be called unique; it’s up to you from looking at that sample if you think it’s amateurish and ugly or transcendentally beautiful. I never thought characters essentially without faces could be so expressive. The final race scene here, from qualifying all the way to
the reactions after it’s over, is a thing of beauty. It’s sad that price has to come into the equation here (if you’re independently wealthy I recommend this unreservedly), but the sad fact is that this is $12.95 for a pretty short read. Maybe you can get it cheaper through Amazon or the next time Top Shelf does a big sale, who knows? It’s a wonderful story in every aspect. Bits of it have been swirling around in my head since I read it a couple of days ago, which is always a good sign. Or merit alone, this is a great book for optimists and pessimists alike.