Creating a stimulating and challenging environment for the bright and inquisitive Trisha is no mean feat, but David applies his formidable creativity and intelligence to the task, and the result is pure genius. In fact, it may just be their ticket out – to a new life, and set them on the path to realising a miracle cure for Trisha.
Sunday, February 19, 2012
THE IDEAS MAN Ian Austin - promising debut
David Peerman is ‘The Ideas Man’. He works long hours for New York’s Department of Sanitation, but the rest of his life is devoted to caring for his 13 year old daughter Trisha. Stricken with a rare and chronic immune deficiency disorder, Trisha is confined to their apartment 24/7. Within its walls, David has created a safe and sanitised environment for Trisha; one which not only keeps her safe, but fit and healthy, educated and entertained.
David has a flair for observing problems and identifying solutions. Against a backdrop of NYC’s daily grind, he marshals all his resources and willpower to keep alive the possibility of finding a transplant treatment and cure for Trisha, however distant that dream might seem. When his latest idea to help a friend out becomes the catalyst for a series of amazing events it seems that their lives might finally be changing for the better. Then, in the midst of new hope a freak accident suddenly threatens everything and in the space of one afternoon their dilemma becomes a life or death race for Trisha, as David faces their biggest challenge yet.
The Ideas Man is an entertaining and engrossing family saga that hooks you in from page one and keeps you reading – and guessing – right to the end. It is also a very poignant and tender novel; one that explores human relationships and ties, and the power of altruism, philanthropy and love. Debut novelist Ian Austin is an impressive new talent; a born story-teller with a gifted imagination.My only complaint is that the book really needed tightening with a thorough structural edit. It would have been an even better yarn had the page count been reduced from close to 500 pages to 400 pages.
While researching and writing The Ideas Man, the author worked closely with a number of organisations, including the Department of Sanitation New York City, the National Marrow Donor Programme and the New Zealand Blood Service. He says that aside from wishing to write an authentic story, he “wanted to highlight some of the issues around transplantation and organ donation, without getting too evangelical or bogging the story down. Hopefully it will make a few people think to look into the subject and consider becoming donors.”
Richard LaGravenese (author, screenplay writer and director of many Hollywood blockbusters, including P.S. I love you) is currently reading The Ideas Man and has been saying some very complimentary things. “It’s still all very surreal really. Who knows where it’s going to end.” Ian says.
I can see it would make a great movie.
Ian Austin was born in England and has lived in New Zealand since 2003. After an unremarkable school life, he drifted in and out of jobs before finding his salvation in the Hampshire Police, where he began a career as a constable before being promoted to detective. Austin later spent time as a tactical firearms officer, covert surveillance operative and National Crime Squad trainer.
He transferred to the New Zealand Police in 2003, having fallen in love with the country and the Kiwi way of life after several visits.
Austin left the police force in 2006 to set up his own training and consultancy business, and now lives in Auckland with his partner Sallie. Between them, they have five children spread over New Zealand and England.
The Ideas Man is Austin’s first novel; his next book, The Agency, forms part of what promises to be an exciting new trilogy of action-packed crime/suspense stories, to be published later in 2012.
I reckon with Austin's professional background and experience, and his obvious talent for writing, The Agency could prove a winner but my advice to him is to find himself a major publisher where he can gain the assistance of an experienced structural editor.Books of this kind must be tautly written.It is a tough market to crack but if he can do it then the sky is the limit. If I were a gambling man I'd wager he can do it. But he needs to take advice from professionals in the industry.
Published in trade paperback by AM Publishing New Zealand