Booklist reviewer Bill Ott is praising the "zesty prose" of James McManus' new collection of linked stories, The Education of a Poker Player. "Despite its title," says the review, "this is not another poker memoir by the author of Positively Fifth Street; rather, it is a collection of seven McManus short stories about the coming-of-age of Vincent Killeen, a Catholic altar boy whose path to the priesthood in the late 1950s and early ’60s is derailed by sex and poker. What John R. Powers did for Catholic boys on the South Side of Chicago in his classic memoir Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, McManus does for their counterparts in suburban Chicago." While calling the subject of growing up in Chicago as "well-trod ground," Ott says: McManus enlivens the familiar material with zesty prose that goes beyond the jokes to capture that ever-melancholy transition from innocence to experience." Out this month, The Education of a Poker Player is now in stock at the BOA Bookstore!
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