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Reviewed by K.J. Simmill for Readers' Favorite
Melvin is dead. There's no beating around the bush with that. But what a mess he left in his wake, or rather his Aunt Martha left after a brief possession of the priest to give him the 'no punches pulled' send-off she thought he deserved. His mistress is pregnant, and his wife, Melody, has made her own withdrawal from the Rogue Sperm Bank in the hope of letting her husband's legacy live on. Melvin has a choice: his aunt is insisting he is born again, and he must quickly choose which vessel his soul should enter, the child carried by his wife, or that of his mistress. There are, of course, complications that cause even those against idle chatter to sow the seeds of gossip. Melvin was indeed reborn, and what a stir it caused.
Lately, whenever I pick up a book claiming to be comedy, a brief wave of dread passes over me. Today's amusement seems often to be nothing more than a string of put-downs, and jerkish behaviour, something I would call closer to bullying than humour. I actually heaved a sigh of relief when I first started reading James Pumpelly's Twice Melvin. I don't remember the last time a book with such witty humour crossed the screen of my kindle. Only a few paragraphs in, I found myself chuckling, and the momentum continues. Refreshing wit, great banter, some ironic humour, all wrapped up in an interesting and enjoyable plot. This book certainly rekindled my faith in the genre, and restored my hope that there are still people who can be funny, without it being at someone's expense.
Within Twice Melvin you'll find some great characters, deep and real with their own unique personalities and agendas. The book itself is written in alternating perspectives between the first person narrative of Melvin (later Melvin Jr.), and the third person perspective of the other characters. Whilst Melvin, for a large portion of the book, is deceased, it in no way hampers the story-telling, and James Pumpelly manages to spin a creative, humorous tale with serious aspects, romance, otherworldly meddling, and mortal gossip. A refreshing read that had me laughing aloud more than once.