Thursday, April 19, 2012

"Requiem for a Broken Dream"

Review - "Requiem for a Broken Dream" by Lori Hawkins

Good story, flawed but enjoyable


Nick Conte left home to make it big in Hollywood.  Stars in his eyes, and a big dream, he's working in a coffee shop and writing a screenplay.  He hopes to lure Stone Carter, a fading actor, out of semi-retirement to star in his movie.  He's so focused, he barely notices his neighbor, Dean Winship, until the man drunkenly mistakes Nick's apartment for his own.

Helping the guy out, letting him sleep it off, Nick can't help but be attracted to the man's good looks.  But nothing happens, at least not yet.  A tentative friendship springs up between the two, but Dean is seeing someone, and that someone isn't very good to him.  He keeps the details from Nick, and it strains their friendship.

Nick shares his dream with Dean, who turns out to be an actor himself.  In fact, he's making a pilot and may be a star himself before long.  Even offers to try to get Nick's script to Stone, with whom he's worked before.  Nick works through an agent, also, but hopes to make a splash.

Then Dean disappears.  Nick hopes for the best, but fears the worst.  When Stone Carter agrees to work with him and picks up an option on the script, Dean's ecstatic.  Still worried about Dean, he agrees to work at Stone's home until the re-write is done.

What he doesn't know is how Stone and Dean are connected, and it may be a huge mistake to work with the man.  Will Dean come back and claim the man he can't quit thinking about?  Will Nick live out his dream to be a famous and successful writer?  Or will Stone come between the two men?

Lori Hawkins has written a very nice book about dreams and how they can make and break a man.  This is a story with a lot of heart and message, and I admire a writer with an ambitious story.  Unfortunately, the execution is slightly off in some area.  But, it never dims the wonderful core of this story.

Nick has a big dream, the hometown boy with talent who moves to Hollywood to make it big.  He's solid, loyal, knows what he wants and goes for it.  And the man has a huge heart - he wants Dean so much, but never pushes the man into something he can't deliver on.  He's the kind of man every guy wants to meet.

And Dean, full of secrets and dreams of his own.  He's just...lost sight of his goals and allowed himself to settle.  His past explains so much, and we see how he struggles with the ways he has to slowly allow his passion to be redirected, fade.  And when he's at his lowest, we want to hold him and make it better.

So many good things about this work jump out for me - the characters, a cogent storyline.  With a surer hand on the editing, this could have been spectacular.  Ms. Hawkins has a ton of talent and I look forward to more out her.

Good attempt - I enjoyed it, flaws notwithstanding.


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