The world needs more love at first sight – Maggie Stiefvater
Jack Fisher is singlehandedly upping the love-at-first-site quota in Farewell Jake Fisher, the story of a man whose life changes for the better after a series of coincidental encounters at his local Meijer Superstore finds him longing for a man with a physical affliction who needs very much to be loved.
Tom’s on-the-job injury, a career ending injury, has left him with the bitter aftertaste of the loss of not only his ability to dance but also the loss of his mobility, which makes him the occasional target of sympathy and even, perhaps, pity. Until Jack, that is, who shows Tom nothing but the heart he wears on his sleeve and the promise of something more in which to invest. Jack’s persistence gives Tom a future, as well as the opportunity to discover talents he’d never have known he had, were it not for the chance meeting that engendered a dream.
I’m not a reader who typically gets caught up in the showing versus telling debate, though my personal preference, if there’s a tip one way or the other, is always going to be in favor of the showing. For me, Farewell Jake Fisher was slightly too one-sided in the telling—long on Jack’s narration and short on the dialogue between the characters and the building of a relationship that I might’ve been more invested in had I been given the opportunity to get to know more about Tom. No offense at all to Jack, but I think Tom could have added some interest to the story if he’d had the chance to emerge as more than just the object of Jack’s attention.
Having said that, however, what’s offered is a sweet confection of a narrative that had somewhat of an autobiographical feel to it, and I did like what I was given.