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The Great Mongolian Bowling League of the United States of America


Worth reading 😎

A fish out of water and buddy comedy about two old men finding themselves at the heart of a Mongolian bowling tournament.

The Great Mongolian Bowling League of the United States of America is a quick and entertaining beach read that centers around a bowling tournament. In many ways, it's about looking back at your life (from the perspective of 72-year-old protagonist Harold), but also experiencing one last exciting opportunity to play the hero.

After setting the scene as a buddy comedy between Harold and his roommate Murray in a mobile home park in Florida, it quickly becomes a fish-out-of-water comedy when the pair find themselves at a tournament put on by Mongolian Americans. The duo gets recruited and suddenly find themselves stars of the show, attracting greater media attention.

This book reminded me of a Carl Hiaasen novel, both for its offbeat comedy and its Florida setting. A large portion of the book is action set around the bowling tournament, which moves at a fast pace as Harold picks up steam and attention.

If there is a flaw in this book, it's that the other characters are mostly one-dimensional, especially the Mongolians and women. Women in particular are portrayed mostly as potential girlfriends and mates. All characters in general who aren't Harold aren't given much depth. I would have liked to see more nuance in handling these characters.

If you don't expect a lot from this book, it's enjoyable. It can be read in a sitting or two and you're transported to another world in a Florida bowling alley.

Reviewed by

Tim Cigelske draws on his experience as a journalist writing about creative people from all walks of life, including farmer, children’s author, comic book artist and Pixar animator. His writing appears in Runner’s World, Adventure Cyclist and Onion AV Club. Ashton Kutcher called him a "clever punk."

About the author

Ed retired from a long business career. Borowsky's fiction is a tapestry of universal themes, including birth, death, aging, and the complexity of human relationships, interwoven with wit and timeless wisdom. He lives in Winter Park, Florida, with his wife and three adult sons. view profile

Published on December 17, 2018

Published by Citrine Publishing

20000 words

Genre: Humor & Comedy

Reviewed by