Clifton delivers a fast-paced comedy in a chipper, sometimes sarcastic tone about engaging characters, complete with a grounded ending that has nothing to do with the billion-dollar lottery ticket. Even when the stakes are high, Clifton never neglects the story’s wit or warmth, though it’s disappointing that the climax finds the “emasculated” Henry’s masculinity restored at the expense of Rose, who becomes (uncharacteristically) a damsel in distress. Still, though Henry and Rose have their flaws, they remain mostly likeable, especially Rose, who takes time on her own to seize a new independence and figure out what she really wants.
The plot gets wilder as it goes, with Clifton pulling off a feat of plate-spinning: He includes blackmail, diamonds, foreign prisons, motorcycle gangs, unlikely alliances, and an undercover sting operation, all without losing sight of the human story at the novel’s heart. A lively beach or commute read, this quick, cheerful parody of aging, capitalism, and marriage offers a little bit of everything––comedy, suspense, romance––and even some insights into the meaning of life.
Takeaway: The sunny comic adventure of a middle-aged couple who wins the lottery in the thick of their midlife crises.
Great for fans of: Tim Dorsey’s The Pope of Palm Beach, Richard Osman’s The Thursday Murder Club, Carl Hiaasen’s Lucky You.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: B
"Powerballs...is an action-packed adventure story that alsoserves as a cautionary taleof what can happen when one is suddenly thrown intoa position of greatwealth...the book was fast-paced and exciting. I loved thatthere wasalways an unexpected twist popping up..."
"A mysterious author delivers the comical tale...a raucous adventure around the globe...brisk, debaucherous, and cheeky sense of humor...fast-paced, modern, and world-spanning..."
“Readers looking for a rollicking adventure... intrigue and action will love Powerballs…where romance, adventure, and greed intersect in a world-hopping journey of lives gone awry.”