Byron’s Lane in many ways reflects the dilemmas of middle age and life itself, and is centered around the dilemmas of Adams as seen through the eyes of his friend Tom. Adams has spent his lifetime using democratic principles at home and abroad to improve people’s lives – but middle age brings with it regret, re-assessment of the principals of The American Dream, and the fading of political and personal dreams in the 21st century. read more
The plot of Byron’s Laneunfolds like a spring fern—one frond at a time; it is a story of intrigue to be savored slowly.
Wallace Rogers’s splendid novel, Byron’s Lane, defies easy description. It is a tale of mystery and intrigue infused with political opinions and commentary on love and friendship, guilt and absolution, rejection and achievement. read more
San Francisco Book Review
Jonathan Adams is an outwardly successful man. He is a well-liked and well-respected college professor and state senator with a lovely house, and he regularly dates women much younger than him. However, his is a classic case of appearances being deceiving. A trip to Iraq to help establish local governments turned tragic, and Adams is having a lot of difficulty coping with the fallout. The entire event is causing him to reexamine his life, and what he finds is not to his liking. His old friend, Tom Walker, visits him for a long weekend, and, through their discussions and reminiscences, a whole host of turmoil is brought to light. read more
A debut novel about two old school pals who reunite to reminisce and confront demons past and present.
Rogers starts this novel off with a bang, with the shooting of a suicide bomber in Iraq, where Jonathan Adams, earnest boyhood friend of the narrator, Tom Walker, works as a civilian contractor spreading “the democracy gospel.” Adams returns home to the U.S., and though he’s a successful college professor and state senator, his friend Walker sees he’s profoundly chagrined and disillusioned—despite the two having grown up on Byron’s Lane in a freshly plowed subdivision of Maplewood, Ohio, the once-small town transformed during their childhood into a seemingly golden middle-class suburbia. Adams, Walker discerns, is “incapable” in his own life though “abundantly blessed” at managing others. Ominously, Adams has bought a house that’s been the scene of a series of unfortunate events, including a bullet that whizzed by his head. Adams writes it off as a wild shot by a teenage hunter, but when he begins to get strange phone calls, Walker starts to wonder. Are terrorists to blame? read more