The Twenty-Five Deeds of Hanson Drake—a novel by Briar Kit Esme.
A high resolution copy of the book cover shown above can be downloaded from this link.
Blurb…The Twenty-Five Deeds of Hanson Drake
Hanson Drake has five hundred million in the bank and a house on the beach overlooking the ocean. As the writer of the world’s favourite song, he hasn’t had to do a day’s work in his life.
Stung into action by a derisive article in a national newspaper, Hanson Drake decides to change his life by becoming a volunteer at a country house.
He vows to do at least one good deed every day in the twenty-four days leading up to Christmas in the hope of securing salvation and redemption for his wasteful life.
In helping others, he finally understands his place in the universe as he learns to celebrate the ordinariness and eccentricities of the people he meets.
But what does fate have planned for Hanson Drake?
❊ ❊ ❊
‘It isn’t all just kismet. Some of it is serendipity. Some of it is sagacity. A lot of it is doing the right thing simply because we can. The difference between those who don’t and those who do, is that those who do, do. It doesn’t get any more complicated than that.’
~ Hanson Drake ~
Nearly three years have passed since I wrote HANSON DRAKE.
Three years marked by a quarter of a million letters and emails sent from people around the world asking questions about Hanson Drake’s life and whether or not the rumours are true that the novel is going to be made into a film.
What can I tell them? Tell you?
~ Briar Kit Esme ~
Really enjoyed this book, despite reading it out of season. Recognisable, realistic characters. Interesting philosophical ideas. Loved the Bowie references. Will return to work out the ones I missed.
Brilliantly conceived and beautifully written. Wish I hadn’t read the Epilogue though.
I look forward to more from Briar Kit Esme.
I really enjoyed reading ‘The Twenty-Five Deeds of Hanson Drake’.
It’s full of likeable characters and shows what a difference people can make with even the smallest gestures of help and kindness. Is Hanson Drake an example for us all to take note of?
It’s an uplifting and thought-provoking book, and if you like the style of ‘The Shipping News’ by Annie Proulx with its short and succinct sentences, you will like this too.
I agree with other reviewers that this book would make an ideal TV drama or film.
It’s well worth reading. You won’t be disappointed.
A clever, heartwarming story not just for Christmas but any time of year. I wasn’t sure, at first, when I came up against some of the clipped. Single. Word. Sentences. But the style grew on me. Merged into the norm. And by the first few days of Advent I was hooked. I loved it. It was one of those seemingly simple tales like The Alchemist which makes you feel good. Great characters, lovely story and it would make a perfect film, TV or radio drama for Christmas unless, like so many commissioners of our programmes, you like tales of woe. Nice one.
A wonderful book on how kindness is all about the small acts and not necessarily Big Bang! Reminded me of my Mom, whose small acts of kindness made a huge difference to people around her.
This is a great book. Very well written and it’s a wonderful Christmas story about the real spirit of giving. I will read this book again and will recommend it to my friends also.
Comments…The Twenty-Five Deeds of Hanson Drake
- A clever, heartwarming story not just for Christmas but any time of year. I wasn’t sure, at first, when I came up against some of the clipped. Single. Word. Sentences. But the style grew on me. Merged into the norm. And by the first few days of Advent I was hooked. I loved it. It was one of those seemingly simple tales like The Alchemist which makes you feel good. Great characters, lovely story and it would make a perfect film, TV or radio drama for Christmas unless, like so many commissioners of our programmes, you like tales of woe. Nice one.
- HANSON DRAKE tickles the soft underbelly of the British middle-classes. There’s something reminiscent of Jerome K. Jerome or P. G. Wodehouse in Briar Kit Esme’s gently comic writing.
- Deceptively simple. It was only when I reached the final chapters that I realised just how deep and perceptive a novel HANSON DRAKE really is.
- I laughed and cried, sometimes on the same page.
- I’m not sure if I just read an advent story or a craftily worded philosophic treatise. Either way I’ll certainly be in line to buy Briar Kit’s next novel.
- I sat down to read one chapter. Ended up reading the whole book. Who doesn’t want to meet a man like Hanson Drake?
- I have just bought life membership to ‘Public Treasures’ thanks to your book. A triumph.
- Would it be possible for you to write a prequel to describe Hanson Drake’s earlier life?
- I thought I knew exactly how the book was going to end. I was so wrong about that.
- I could see the BBC making HANSON DRAKE into one of those serialisations that they usually do for Dickens’ stories. Would be a festive hit.
- The chapter about Talulah Bowles was so moving. The [spoiler removed] in the final scene reduced me to tears. I can’t believe I cried just because [spoiler removed]. But it seemed to be the least that I could do.
- Is HANSON DRAKE a book about faith or the rejection of faith?
- My three children and I really enjoyed the story of Great Scott. Any chance you’ll be printing it as a separate picture book, or even as a series of books?
- In our house, the moral imperative question is now framed as: What would Hanson do?
- Can you please settle an argument that has been raging in our family for the last six months and actually explain the riddle of the five north poles?
- I have read HANSON DRAKE six times so far.
- I really am anxious to know about Haladdin and his family.
- I read to ‘The End’ of the book and then the ‘Warning’. I couldn’t bear to read the ‘Epilogue’ or the ‘Postscript’ for fear of [spoiler removed].
- One minute you’re chuckling at Gordon and Gwen and are immersed in a highly benevolent vision of Middle England, and the next you are thrown by the moving chapters about Talulah Bowles, River Becken and the Fawn—let alone [spoiler removed].
- There’s such an important message in the Fawn, but I struggled to know if I should read it to my kids or not. In the end I did, and then we discussed the issues it raised. Parents should read ahead and decide whether it is suitable for their children.
- HANSON DRAKE is both a great novel that is simple, and a simple novel that is great. The kind of book that will still be read one hundred years from now.
- The chapter about Noah Guilmard-Mistry deals with the issue of [spoiler removed] head-on. If people only read one chapter, they should make sure that it is that one. I found myself crying along with Whitney and Leeann.
- Christmas will never be quite the same again after reading HANSON DRAKE.
- Three cheers for the acerbic Christopher Hitchingly. He’s the one who has got ‘quite a tongue’.
- I can only think of two things that would improve curling up on the sofa on a cold winter’s evening with HANSON DRAKE: a hot water bottle and a mug of hot chocolate—topped off with marshmallows, of course.
- I so want to attend a ‘Solstice Breakfast’.
- I love ‘qwayle’—it will make playing Scrabble so much easier.
- I hated Vincent Virgo at first sight, but grudgingly admired him by the end of the chapter. Very clever writing. Vinny and Alexis could have stepped out of the pages of a Dickens’ novel. Quite a tongue.
- As an archeologist, you can imagine how much I enjoyed the chapter about Amelia Platelli. If only all archeological digs had a pig like Ethel. The filthy car—well, that is accurate.
- Huzzah for Hanson Drake: we finally have a Christmas character capable of knocking Scrooge off his festive perch.
- I’m proud to say that I was a London 2012 Qwayle.
- Jon Kerking. The man’s a legend, Anson.
- A book that can be. Enjoyed by. All the family. Rare enough. These days. (I did. Love. Gordon.)
- Is there a family anywhere on the planet that doesn’t know someone exactly like Gwen? #OnMyMobileBabes
- Lady Lucia—she’s the key, isn’t she?
- I read the book twice. Laughed and cried a number of times. Was going to email to plead with you to re-write the Fawn because I found the chapter so distressing. But then I read it a third time and realised that what Jon Kerking says at the end of the chapter is pivotal to understanding Hanson Drake and why, in turn, the Fawn chapter itself is needed. It has a dark and terrifying beauty.
- There are waiters in hotels all over the country who are now carefully studying the faces of their guests as they eat their breakfasts.
- Is the proverb that Mako quotes to Hanson actually a real Japanese saying? ‘The philosopher sees the world in the garden. The poet sees the garden in the world.’
- Advent Six, Great Scott—I laughed so much I had tears running down my face and a stitch in my side.
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