The title: No Relation
The author: Terry Fallis
Publication: Douglas Gibson Books, 2014
Got it from: Terry Fallis podcast
Fallis writes the kinds of books you like to read when you need
something to ground you: something light, funny and uncomplicated, where
everything will be tied up in a happy ending. Although it didn't have
the feminist humour of Pole to Pole or the biting satire of The Best Laid Plans, I enjoyed listening to Terry Fallis reading No Relation on his podcast.
basic joke of the book is that the protagonist is named Earnest
Hemmingway. Spelled differently from the famous author and "no
relation," as he would have you know. There are a lot of classic Fallis
tropes on display here. The protagonist starts out with a rotten
string of bad luck, losing his job and his girlfriend on the same day.
But in typical Fallis fashion, he turns it around to his advantage.
After a video of him getting to a fight with a DMV clerk about his name
goes viral on YouTube, Earnest starts a meetup group for people with
famous names called Name Fame. Befriending Diana Ross (who really can
sing), Mahatma Gandhi (who has anger management issues), Mario Andretti
(who can't drive) and others, Earnest must exercise the ghost of the
real Earnest Hemmingway to find his inner writer. As his travels take
him to Paris, Pamplona and Key West, he also has to deal with his dad's
expectation that he'll take over the family underwear manufacturing
It wasn't my favourite Fallis, but it was enjoyable in a comforting, lighthearted way.