Reviews

Chump Change

Blaine Kyllo

Like other unpublished novelists, I am always curious to read the new writers as they are "discovered" by the publishing houses. God help us if the people at Random House keep this up. Their latest "find" is David Eddie, whose novel Chump Change is a pedantic and tiresome glimpse at the life of a young male chauvinist lush. After leaving New York and his job as a letters clerk for Newsweek, David Henry returns to Toronto, where he plans to realize his dream of becoming a "real" writer. Instead, he suffers failure as a freelancer, then success writing television news, then failure again when he screws up once too often and gets fired. In the final pages, David Eddie (the author) finally allows David Henry (the character) to develop, but it is too little, too late. This novel is too self-absorbed and littered with characters who, if they are based on real people, are simply cardboard cutouts of the originals. And if they're not?

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