Book Review: The Noticer by Andy Andrew

"Call me Jones, not Mr Jones… just Jones."

Different is a good way to describe this book. How is it different? It only took me a very few days (that is consecutive days) to read it. Despite my love for books and reading, my schedule does not allow me to polish off a book within few days. It is different because the narrative asks no questions, but gives us answers. There should be one character in this book that you have encountered, as a friend, a family member or even when you look in the mirror.

It is a book of answers, but the questions are buried in the life of some of the people he touched. The life stories are revealed by the narrator. ‘Putting perspective’ to the study of problems the size of mountains, that are actually found to be as frightening as molehills. Like a doctor he operates by disassembling the crisis, slightly shifts the perspective and the patient end up with better sight, a cure for the blindness that results from problems we fear have no good solution. And like the Apostle Paul, Jones becomes all things for all people. Appearing as a Latino to the Mexicans, Asia to the Chinese and at times, his race is ambiguous and hard to fathom. The only thing consistent was that he was old, and people report he hadn’t aged in years. Remember, it is all a matter of perspective.

Andy Andrews is a great story teller. The character Jones is an enigma that seems able to be at the right place and at the right time. You get the impression that everyone who encounters Jones has an encounter that they do not forget, but the book focused on just a few of these encounters. Carrying a battered and secretive suitcase, Jones moves from one storied encounter to the next. Wisdom is in abundance and people are compelled by this old man to reveal what we ourselves dare not say out loud.

If you are a Joseph Girzone fan, you will enjoy reading this narrative by Mr Andrew. As I read I kept being reminded of the book Girzone wrote, “Joshua: A Parable for Today” in lots of ways. Both books bring to life characters that use or change a person’s perspective to bring wisdom and wonderment to every encounter. Jones as well as Gorzone’s Joshua is the kind of person whom I would not only like to meet in real life, but emulate as well. Thanks for this great read. My only complaint was it was too short, but maybe there was wisdom in that too.

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~ by thoughtcrime2 on April 27, 2009.

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