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Reviewed by Chinazo Anozie for Readers' Favorite
Imburt Hawkins is just a regular teenager trying to get through high school in the seventies, especially with a name like Imburt. Add the fact that he had a very conservative upbringing, with his father working for the church, and attended a likewise conservative boarding school in the South, where boys and girls weren’t even allowed to hold hands and rock music was considered the devil’s anthem. Imburt has a lot to deal with, especially since he really loves rock songs and has a magnificent voice to boot. When a school performance with Imburt and his friends crosses the line of what the school board considers moral, Imburt will have to choose between his childhood community and his love for rock and roll. Find out more in Wince: The Imburt Hawkins Story by Marvin Brauer.
Wince by Marvin Brauer was a fun read. I loved Imburt’s sense of humor; I cracked up a lot while reading. I could relate to him and instantly connected with him. His narration sounds like he’s talking with a longtime friend; you could almost hear him speaking. I also loved the old-school seventies slang. Brauer does a splendid job of capturing the seventies, the awkwardness of teenage years, and everything that comes with it. Rick’s pompous acts of self-righteousness also had me in fits. Most of all, I enjoyed Imburt and his pals’ love of music: The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, etc., because I live for rock music, and those are some of my favorite bands. Since the story is told by a future Imburt reminiscing about his early years, I was intrigued to discover what he made of himself. I desperately wished Wince was an actual song I could listen to, especially reading how Imburt described it. Wince is the perfect nostalgic read that will take you back in time to the real meaning of rock and roll.