A side-splitting romp alongside an unconventional hero, William Mark’s OUTRAGEOUS: THE LEGEND OF ZESTY SUNDROPS, is the story of a man who possesses the bravado and skills of Wild Bill Hickock and the paternal dysfunction of THE GREAT SANTINI’s Bull Meecham.
OUTRAGEOUS is a study in the complex ingredients that go into the creation of an unforgettable war hero who lives somewhere between famous and infamous. Not unlike other legends of literature, Zesty, with his side-kick brother, Hoot, strides through life with his own set of rules and sense of fair play. Possessing a larger-than-life personality to match his masculine prowess as an army scout and sharp-shooter, Zesty takes his father’s advice about hunting to heart. “Don’t think. Don’t hesitate.” As he undertakes various missions during the war, this advice comes in handy, but it also leads to situations of great peril that would be certain doom for most men. But this hero possesses talents far surpassing most men, and his ability to use his talents and instincts to outsmart his captors is what makes him a legend.
One of the most enjoyable aspects of the novel is the author’s use of subplots in revealing Zesty’s backstory. Using two fictional literary tributes within the narrative, Mark’s gives the reader valuable insight into his protagonist. The first of these subplots reveals his early life on the Cherokee reservation and the life events leading to his decision to join the army. The use of a manuscript written by Ernest Hemingway to reveal background information proves a great addition to the narrative and a delightful read by itself. The second subplot is the inclusion of the Broadway play written about this cantankerous, but loveable protagonist. The author’s use of this literary technique is an entertaining and unusual way to reveal, not only essential information about his hero, but a glimpse into the complicated psyche of Zesty Sundrops.
Readers will find much to like in this riveting tale of an impetuous, imperfect, yet memorable legend. Mark has written a page-turner that will keep its reader chuckling throughout the main character’s adventures. Outrageous, indeed, and downright funny, this is one story readers will remember.
~Kat Kennedy for IndieReader