Book Review: Findo's Mousetrap by:Graham Paskett

Book Review:  Findo's Mousetrap

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Findo's Mousetrap

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  These are my honest opinions and thoughts, and were no way swayed by anyone.

A little about the author:  Graham Paskett

There wasn't a mountain of information at my disposal at time of this review, but wanted to share a little about this author.  This is the information I found on Amazon. This is Mr. Paskett's debut novel.  Mr. Paskett began his career as a cub reporter on a weekly newspaper in Coventry (England?).  Once he finished his training, he continued working on several newspapers in the UK until eventually he changed careers and began PR in the oil industry.  Currently he runs his own successful PR consultancy business, specializing in gardening and retail.

The work of Findo's Mousetrap was started way back in 2000 on a trip to Australia, but it wasn't until 2011 that Mr. Paskett truly began his focus on his book.  He finally released his book on Amazon in 2012.

Findo's Mousetrap:

Ok.  So, I'm supposed to be completely honest.  Had I not received a copy of this, this wouldn't be a book I would even look twice at.  I know that it may sound "pedestrian" of me, but covers really are a huge part in grabbing someone's attention.  Now, after having read the book, I can see why the cover is the way it is. However, if the majority of the public shares my same views on the importance of covers, I'm afraid that it may find difficulty in the book market.  And, that's just honest.

What in the world is Findo's Mousetrap??  Ok, so I have to admit, when I was first approached about giving a review I was a little bit skeptical.  It just didn't sound like a book that I normally read.  So for the sake of would - be buyer's, I think it's essential to understand what exactly Findo's Mousetrap is.

Findo's Mousetrap is an invention that is kinda like a DVD of the real life past.  You of course have to know exact dates and the location of what historical event you are searching for, but if you have that info the machine can give a spotlight into the past.  I hope this might help you into understanding the title.

Now, the Book...

I know this book review is a little different from most of my reviews, but I have to assume that my audience might think the way I do.  The previously mentioned topics are truly some obstacles that I would find when coming across this book and looking to purchase.  I would need to understand what exactly it is I'm looking at reading.

So, I didn't have a high amount of expectation quite honestly.  I was just so thrilled to have been asked to read something, but I was afraid "What If I can't read it, or it's dreadfully boring??".  Having never been approached before it was a real worry I had. However, it was short lived once I opened the actual book. While, it isn't something I would have picked up on my own (because of the lack of understanding at what the book was), it was definitely a very interesting read.

The time period is present day.  Findo is our main character, and the mousetrap is a co-creation between him and his childhood friend, Mac.  We first meet Findo as he is about to be interviewed for the BBC on a radio station.  We also meet Dymphna Doyle, who will become a central figure as well.  

While the time period is present day, it's told in an almost old school tone.  There were some parts as I read, I felt I was reading a contemporary book. However, most of the time it felt like reading a Sherlock Holmes, because of some of the language and word choices.  I found myself drawn into the story.  I wanted to know more about the character's and their motivations.  I have to admit, it ended like nothing I imagined it would.

I have to admit that Dymphna Doyle wasn't a character that I found myself rooting for.  I had a strong dislike for her almost immediately. However, through the story those feelings did change.  

This story carries us from England, to Scotland and then to the US.  It is a story about familial obligations and how the past can somewhat stunt our growth from the pain and the fear of the unknown.  It also begs the question, should we peek into the past?  Sometimes, looking backwards can only cause more pain.  For myself, I was at a struggle with myself over the ethical merits of a machine that can so clearly peer into the past.  While, yes, there may be some great points to having such a machine, it could also peer into the very parts of us that we have worked so hard at overcoming.

However, it is a fictional machine. let's hope that there isn't a Findo's Mousetrap anywhere in our future.  I know for myself, I wouldn't want my children or grandchildren trying retrace my "big historical moments".  Sometimes the past is best left in the past.  However, Findo's Mousetrap is a marvel.  It's one of those things that can be a paradox.  While wonderful in many ways, one must think of the serious implications such a machine would bring to the lives of whomever it encountered.  Would you want to be responsible for the unknown effects a machine of that magnitude would have in the lives of those it touched?

Perhaps, I'm reading more into it, but those were questions that plagued me while reading this.  While I was in awe of how fantastic a contraption like the mousetrap would be, how daunting for the creator because it truly would be like opening up Pandora's Box.

This story was part invention, part love story, part historical.  Yet, for the most part it all worked.  There were a few parts that had me scratching my head wondering what the purpose of the scene was, as there was never anything else made mention of afterwards.  However, for the most part, it was a deeply enjoyable story.

I would hate for readers to miss out on the story of Findo, because of lack of understanding of what the story is about.  It truly was a great read and one I might have missed out on had it not been for this blog.  So, I am glad that I expanded my reading horizons.  For those who enjoy historical fiction, this will definitely be up your alley.  If historical fiction isn't your cup of tea and your prefer more of a contemporary romance, this also could work for you as well.  Although the writing is more in an old world tone (in my opinion), it's very much a story in present day and can appeal to a wide variety of people.  It isn't just a primarily romantic novel, nor just a scientific, it's a meld of a lot of things.  But it works.

If I were to rate it, I think it'd have to be a four star.  Only because there were a couple of spots to me that seemed to lack clear motivation and it confused me how this was supposed to move the story forward.  However, there were only maybe one or two scenes like that.  There were a couple of characters I wanted to know more of and felt that the story would have been more rounded had their plots been more focused on.  Sometimes it felt as if a character had been just dropped off the scene altogether and forgotten about.  But, as debut novels go, this was a really fantastic book.  One, I hope others can and will embrace and truly give it a try!

I always fear that I'm going to give too much away and in the process I end up being afraid that I haven't shared enough.  I hope that this helps you to get a good idea on what to expect from this book.  I hope that I have done it justice.

To find out more about Findo and Findo's Mousetrap:

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