Author: Rev. Christopher Thoma
Publisher: Angels’ Portion Books
I find it somewhat amusing that I am writing this review, just as I find it amusing that I have now read two of these books. Why is that? I rarely drank alcohol when I was able to, and even then, I drank wine. Moreover, I haven’t had a glass of anything since July of 2018; shortly thereafter, I learned that I was pregnant with my first child. But such is life, I suppose. It is also amusing to write a review on a book of reviews. And yet, this book is more than that.
Rev. Thoma’s writing lives up to the subtitle of his book: a Clergyman’s Whisk(e)y narrative. This is a book of reviews, yet these reviews are stories, a glimpse into someone’s life and perspective on the world. The reader is included in these narratives as if you were having a conversation with the author, a style I love to read. While he does eventually get to the actual review of the drink in question, he’ll first take you on a short journey to get you there. These brief narratives will make you laugh, cry, ponder, and then laugh again. Some will leave you wanting more, yet pulling you on towards the next story.
At times, Rev. Thoma’s writing reminded me a little of the character of Harry Dresen. I hope that’s not sacrilegious, and yet, I have a feeling he might agree with me if he’s read any of those books. There is something about the easygoing yet blunt nature of his writing that I find appealing. I also love how his narratives flow into the review. And I even noted some whiskeys that I look forward to trying (one day) because of his descriptions! On a related note, while I am not sure I share his love of Florida, it is nice to know there are other Nessie enthusiasts out there. To understand this context, you’ll simply have to read the book.
I’d recommend this delightful collection to anyone who loves whiskey and loves short narratives. Most of these are the length of flash fiction, but with a slice of life bent to them. My only complaint about the book was that it was a little too heavy for me to hold with one hand. And yet, I cannot imagine any of these narratives not included. You’ll learn perhaps more than you expect at first glance, and you’ll enjoy the journey throughout. So get yourself a glass of something (or a mug of hot chocolate or tea, like me) and get a copy of this fine book. You’ll be glad you did.
Blessings to you and yours,
~Madelyn Rose Craig