Beauregard (Bug) Montage owns an auto repair shop with his cousin, Kelvin. He’s married to Kia and has two sons. He also has a daughter from his youth by another mother. He’s a good provider for his family and has put a lot of distance between the man he is today and who he was “back in the day” when he was one of the best wheel men in that world. When a new auto repair company opens and puts a serious dent in his business, Beauregard has to find a way to remain financially solvent to keep his business and pay the mortgage. The collision of multiple setbacks has him dipping a toe back into the world he’d sworn he left behind, participating in a “sure thing” that will get him back on track financially. Famous. Last. Words.
the heart of the story…
Beauregard doesn’t think of himself as “Bug” unless he’s dealing with people from his past. It was interesting how he was able to make distinctions of his character depending on the role he occupied in the moment. One of the strongest influences in his life was Anthony, the father who abandoned him and his mother when he was a young boy. He was also a skilled wheel man who never left that life. As much as Beauregard understood his failings, he still had an idealized image of that man and it shaped a lot of his decisions. As Bug abandoned his instincts to agree to do a job with someone he knew he couldn’t trust, I couldn’t help but foresee the inevitable happening but was unprepared for seeing him in action and the brutality that lived within him. It was hard to listen to but even harder to turn away. But…and it’s a big but…I couldn’t help rooting for him to win and find a way out. I was as conflicted about him as he was about himself because I could see the humanity in him and his soul.
Oh. My. Goodness! Pick a superlative and it applies to this performance. If you have a choice to read or listen, treat yourself to an audio delight. He masters every character but especially Beauregard. I could visualize everyone not only from the writing but the voice they were given. And the storytelling is just extraordinary.
the bottom line…
This is a hard story but an important one. It’s been a long time since I’ve felt the inner conflict experienced with these characters and their narratives. Simplistically, Beauregard is just a man looking to live an honest life, provide for his family and give his children better options than he ever had. He’s faithful and loving to his wife and is a role model to his sons until all of that is threatened. While I couldn’t do what he did to protect his family, Beauregard resorted to what lay beneath to do so. I’m so glad I chose to listen to the story because it just made everything even more profound. It far surpassed the hype and earned every award given. Oh, and a lot of the story was set in my hometown of Newport News…the author got everything right!
- Release Date: July 14, 2020
- Narrator: Adam Lazarre-White
- Audio Length: 11 hours, 8 minutes
- Publisher: Macmillan Audio