Back of the book: Dale Hammer is trying to find his part of the American Dream. But he just can’t keep up. In a story of hilarious consequences, we find Dale in one week accused of cutting down the sign to his subdivision, plagued with a father who has come to live over his garage, and on the hook for being the Rocket Man of his son’s Scout troop. While the price of the American Dream has become nothing short of being rich and famous, Dale heads for the catastrophe of Rocket Day with one mission – to give his son a sense of independence, and in the process, find himself.
Rocket Man was almost too painful to read. Given the current state of the economy and reasons for that state, it was totally believable. Ten years ago it might have served as a cautionary tale but today it could be a story on 20/20.
A few years ago Dale and his wife and kids left Chicago for the suburbs – land of big houses on big lots, no crime, and like-minded folks (well, maybe not). What they realize a little too late is that it’s like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. All the trappings of his American Dream begin to weigh heavily on Dale as he tries to keep up appearances but becomes more and more angry. Spending a week in Dale’s life was rather annoying but Hazelgrove’s pace kept me reading.
Overall, I’d say if you want to read a novel about what’s happening in our society these days, this could be the book for you.