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bookcover
ISBN 978-0-9845921-3-5 640 pages / List $30.00 Hobblebush Books, 2012

 

Poor Richard’s Lament: A most timely tale
“Though the hour is dear, yet still there is time.”

“A re-imagining of Ben Franklin you will not soon forget.”
-Walter Issacson, author of Steve Jobs

“A grand and gorgeous book!”
-Michael Zuckerman, University of Pennsylvania

 

 

Benjamin Franklin has been confined to a private apartment in the Plantation of the Unrepentant for the past two-plus centuries. Instead of contemplating his ‘errata,’ however, Ben has added 12 more volumes to his Autobiography.

Celestial patience having run out, Ben is brought before a panel of examiners, one of whom, disconcertingly, is the man who was largely responsible for Ben’s undeserved womanizer rap: one John Adams, Esq.

By the end of Ben’s examination, in which the ‘sins of the father’ are brought devastatingly to fore, Ben fully expects to be cast into the abyss. Instead, he is invited to bear witness to what’s become of his “dear country” in the two-plus centuries of his absence.

Ben’s odyssey of witness begins at his birth site in Boston, passes through New York City (where Ben upstages a leadership conference at the Waldorf Astoria), and ends, with wrenching poignancy, at his gravesite in Philadelphia.

Interwoven into the main story is a second, this one beginning in the red-carpeted parlors of the West Wing and ending in the bloodstained streets of West Philadelphia. Eventually the two stories collide, like massive tectonic plates, in a stunning series of shocks and aftershocks.

Following in the traditions of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life, and Dante’s Divine Comedy, Poor Richard’s Lament, nine years in the making, is an intricately woven, ultimately uplifting tale of hope and redemption, written in close consonance with the avuncular and aphoristic persona of Benjamin Franklin, Printer.

“A tour de force!” -Dori Hale, poet