I know it may shock some people to know that I don’t play chess. As nerdy as I am, I’ve just never had any interest in the game. My latest read, Perpetual Check by Rich Wallace, revolves around the game of chess, but you really don’t have to know a lot about the game to enjoy this book.
Zeke and Randy Mansfield are two brothers with issues. Zeke is a senior in high school, an all-around athlete, and their father’s favorite son. Randy is a freshman, kind of pudgy, and is generally liked by everyone except his father and brother. One thing the boys do have in common is chess. They are both exceptional chess players and are competing in the state qualifying tournament. There is a very good chance they will end up playing each other.
As the brothers deal with their own relationship and the chess tournament, they must also come to terms with their super-competitive father, the ultimate sideline parent. Mr. Mansfield is always pushing his sons, yelling at them, berating Randy, making excuses for Zeke’s failures, and living through both boys’ victories. Both Randy and Zeke know that they must confront their father, and they must do it united. Can they put aside their own differences to save their family and themselves? And how can they compete with the distraction of their father in the background? Read Rich Wallace’s Perpetual Check to find out.
Perpetual Check is a very short, easy read. I can see a lot of guys checking this one out of my library, mainly because of the length (only 112 pages). I hope they do actually read the book because it is a good story about two brothers who learn there is more to life than sibling rivalry. This is a lesson that more people need to learn (myself included).