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Reviewed by Divine Zape for Readers' Favorite
Once Upon a Crossroad by Richard Gibson is a tale of grit, hardship, romance, and starting anew when everything falls apart. Set in New York and suburban Connecticut, the narrative follows Erich Mauer in the 1970s, a man hit by adversity from different angles of life, including the loss of Tina, the love of his life, to leukemia, the loss of his job, and a wayward son now in a state-run rehabilitation center. Having experienced broken marriages, Erich begins to look for the woman who is going to replace the love of his life. Follow him as he looks for a new job and as he navigates the world of relationships. Can he finally find the thing or person that can fill the void in his heart and find the balance and meaning he craves?
Richard Gibson writes in a way that captivates readers, infusing the story with realism and bringing up situations that reflect the reality readers face in contemporary real life. Erich is a sophisticated character, one with questions that haunt the mind of many a reader. He is beset by incertitude and painful thoughts of the future. It is interesting to follow him as he evolves in the story. His humanity and the situations in which he finds himself elicit a strong sense of pathos in the reader. The prose is beautiful and the pacing just right for an enjoyable read. The conflict is very strong at a psychological level and it reflects the dilemmas that plague many people. Once Upon a Crossroad is a novel of difficult choices and what it takes to start again after life comes to a painful standstill.