Book Review: Uncommon Type by Tom Hanks

RTN Book review Uncommon Type Photo Credit: Twitter

A COLLECTION of 17 short stories showing that two-time Oscar winner Tom Hanks is as talented a writer as he is an actor.

A hectic, funny sexual affair between two best friends. A World War II veteran dealing with his emotional and physical scars.  A second-rate actor plunged into sudden stardom and a whirlwind press junket.  A small-town newspaper columnist with old-fashioned views of the modern world.  A woman adjusting to life in a new neighborhood after her divorce. Four friends going to the moon and back in a rocket ship constructed in the backyard.  A teenage surfer stumbling into his father’s secret life.

These are just some of the people and situations that Tom Hanks explores in his first work of fiction, a collection of stories that dissects, with great affection, humour, and insight, the human condition and all its foibles. The stories are linked by one thing: in each of them, a typewriter plays a part, sometimes minor, sometimes central.

To many, typewriters represent a level of craftsmanship, beauty and individuality that is harder and harder to find in the modern world. In his stories, Mr Hanks gracefully reaches that typewriter-worthy level. Known for his honesty and sensitivity as an actor, Mr Hanks brings both those characteristics to his writing.

Alternating between the whimsical, moving and occasionally melancholy, Uncommon Type is a book that will delight as well as surprise his millions of fans.

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