In Epics of a Man, Freddie McSears, Jr. sets out to celebrate the birth of his son, Joshua, with inspiration and encouragement that he hopes will guide this young life through the challenges that surely await him. McSears’ goal is emphatic: “As your father I will do everything I can to empower, motivate, encourage and provide protection for you no matter what the circumstances.”
While often presented in stanzas and with rhyme, the pieces in this book aren’t quite poetry but more a collection of musings, observations and insights, some of which approach the poetic and others that are more decidedly prose.
The book is divided into four main sections: “Steps In Life,” ”Facets of Love,” “The Other Side,” and “Support and Encouragement.” While McSears ruefully acknowledges in “Excuse Me While I Reinvent Myself” that “I speak with a limited vocabulary,” it’s also true that he speaks with sincerity and conviction. He notes that “We spend so much of our life looking forwards, but living it backwards.” And similarly, that “We move forward through life attracting what we think we want with little understanding of what we need.”
In many similar passages, McSears’ son will surely find wisdom that will help him through life. General readers, however, will likely experience reservations about the book. Too often, the writing is stiff and awkward, even confusing in its phrasing and diction. A problem exists as well in McSear’s reliance on self-help jargon that can leave his sentences flat and tuneless, as in “It’s funny; on occasions I hear a small voice, to remind me to make a quality choice” or “By making quality decisions in our lives we diminish, but not [sic] erase the hurt and pain of life.”
Still, McSears’ love and compassion for his son shines through. Joshua is lucky to have a father who cares enough to leave him this testament of hope and devotion.
Also available as an ebook.