I’ve done a couple of book blog tours before, but my favorite has always been when I worked with Erik and his team at Breakeven Books.
So, when he reached out for me to be part of the book blog tour for The Final Weekend: A Stoned Tale, I jumped at the opportunity.
Sometimes you just need a fun dumb read that is the equivalent of Project X in book form and everyone is of the legal age. It’s even more important to have this when the world is in the middle of a pandemic. There are times when you just need to be in a world of everyone partying and having a good time.
That’s exactly how I would describe the events on The Final Weekend: A Stoned Tale by Neal Cassidy.
Here’s the author blurb for his book:
Neal Cassidy is an American writer who grew up in Forest, Va. An ex-tennis pro, he also spent his winters competing in Big Air & SlopestyleThe Final Weekend: A Stoned Tale author blurb
competitions on skis. After many years of an undiscerning lifestyle, he
decided to put his experiences into his first novel, The Final Weekend: A
Stoned Tale. He does his best writing at home while listening to
Tchaikovsky at a low volume, with a hot black tea, frozen chocolate fruits, and five pre-rolled blunts within reach.
Neal Cassidy’s book The Final Weekend: A Stoned Tale is largely influenced by the party lifestyle. It’s a book full of debauchery, alcohol, and smoking a ton of marijuana.
I don’t suggest that everyone go out and get trashed all the time, but hearing others exploits of this is always fun. That’s how The Final Weekend feels. It’s like having a group of friends tell you about the last weekend they have together before they start adult life after college.
My favorite thing about this is that most of Hollywood’s party stories are about high school kids getting into intoxicated shenanigans, but The Final Weekend actually has everyone be the legal age to consume weed and alcohol.
There are a ton of characters in this novel and each chapter is from a different character’s viewpoint.
The voicing for the characters can kind of run together occasionally, but it’s the authors first book so we can forgive him here. It never gets so confusing that you can’t remember whose point of view it is, but the characters will occasionally sound the same.
Cassidy perfectly captures what male camaraderie looks like when he has the guys just hanging out though. It’s very masculine dominant throughout the book, and even the girls tend to show off some stereotyped beliefs about men. This makes some interesting characters and pretty funny jokes.
My biggest complaint is that it never explicitly tells you why it’s their final weekend together. I would have liked to get a little more info on that. Nonetheless, the book is a quick read that helps give a little levity to these crazy times.
The ending is incredible though. It feels like it comes out of left field, but that feeling is true to life too. Sometimes crazy things just happen to people and there’s not much we can do about it.
I would love it if Cassidy were to revisit this story and add a short chapter or two dealing with the consequences of the ending.
The thing is, I always want that because I like psychology and I feel it’s a neglected frame for storytelling. I’m that guy that’s always wondering how the Wizarding World recovered after Voldemort or how Middle-Earth advanced post Sauron.
The total flip of an ending does make this book go from light reading to crazy intense and mildly traumatizing, so it probably doesn’t make for the best light read if that’s what you’re looking for.
Connect with Neal: