The Mending, by R.B. Scott
Relationships, families in particular, are always dizzying studies in contrasts and contradictions as Benjamin Adams Hutchinson Pratt, the man who remembers everything too well, comes to understand. Long before he purposefully distanced himself from his devout Mormon family and culture, this first born son with the heirloom name, sensed he was the least loved, the most neglected of the four Pratt children. His assumptions were neither wholly wrong nor right. Yet, these half-truths (or whole-lies) are have defined Ben-Adams’ perception of self, home, family, and faith.
A portentous high school reunion compels him, bit by bit, surprise by surprise, to come to terms with his heritage and birthright, and the land he abandoned for freedoms and energy of New York City and The East. Ben's almost accidental introspection, aided and sometimes abetted by his wife Annebury, compels him to reassess practically everything he ever believed about himself, or wondered about his father and family. It leads to the reassessment of of long forgotten or ignored friends and enemies. And, it drives him to adjust his perspectives of the Mormon culture, the people and events that touched and, perhaps, shaped his life in ways he did not understand or appreciate fully at the time.
First Readers' Comments about
“With uncommon frankness and an easy riveting style, Scott plumbs the depths of life and religion generally, particularly the inscrutable culture of Mormonism. His language is edgy, evocative, humorous and compassionate. Without preaching, the compelling story reminds that all humankind benefits when we care and pull for one another.”
~ Carol Lynn Pearson | Author of Goodbye, I Love You and No More Goodbyes
“R.B. Scott’s characters in “The Mending” are deeply drawn, intensely interesting and complicated. His writing style is very free-flowing, patterned like memories occur. Each one hitches a ride on the one before it, which makes total sense in a novel about a man (Benjamin Adams Pratt) who never forgets anything as he attempts to straddle the demanding and inscrutable religion and culture of Mormonism and the electrifying real-world he discovered in New York City and Boston.”
~ Thomas Duncan | Actor and Playwright of The Remarkable Parley P!
“Unfolding like a memoir, The Mending wrests memories into the present day as it turns upside down concepts of personal responsibility, friendship, morality, empathy and caring.”
~ Mitch Mayne | Contributor to The Huffington Post
“The Mending is poignant, funny, riotous, at times tragic, lovely, and transcendent. With candor and in an enjoyable, redolent style, Scott tests the meaning of life and love as he explores the eccentricities of the Mormon culture, dogma, tensions, and its people. The questions posed are those posed by religion, by life, religious or not. Like John Irving, Phillip Roth, and even Walker Percy, Scott lets us feel the poignancy and value of life where occasionally humor, tragedy, and hallowed moments coincide, helping us realize the joy that can fill our mortal bye. We see how compassion, love, kindness, caring and being one with the needs of our brothers and sisters, in unexpected ways and moments, make us human and good. No preaching, here, but this riveting yarn with unexpected moments of quandary teaches more gospel than most preachers. Self-righteous judgment is put in its place – the last shall be first and the first shall be last; he that will lose his life for my sake shall save it.”
~ Christopher Blakesley | Professor Emeritus, Law Center, Louisiana State University
"Scott does an amazing thing: while introducing [Ben] Pratt as a pretentious, self-absorbed curmudgeon that readers may dislike initially, he masterfully allows Pratt's savvy and adoring wife, observant family members and friends, to adjust misconceptions and transform him into an accommodating and kind, if surprisingly complicated and compromised human being."
~ Jim Jansen | Actor, Los Angeles