Today I am on the Blog Tour for Shikoku by Dave Tepfer and I am here with an extract for you all.
Before I share that though, here’s some information on the book.
Title: Shikoku Author: Dave Tepfer Publisher: Clink Street Publishing Published: 21st January 2021 Format: Paperback Source: N/A Summary: …an island in Japan, where bicycles, food and love mix for high adventure.
A retired professor-poet and a young doctor-jazz singer cycle Shikoku in the Seto Inland Sea. Their wanderings unite them emotionally and physically, and help them to overcome past tragedies and to discover new lives in themselves and each other. They are aided by bicycles, cherry blossoms, wild coastlines, hot spring bathing and Japanese cuisine. They discuss love, life, art and religion. The usual conflict between good and evil is subdued, and while the love story is the motive force, it is not the only intrigue. Shikoku is a “novelogue,” not only because their adventures take place through cycling, but also because the characters undertake a voyage to a better life.
The first light was colorless, grayish, fragile, clear. Returning life? Desire? So many shadows to fill. He glanced into the darkness of the past six years. Redeem a loss, pass over uncomfortable visions and voices? Dare to hope, with all the risks?
Prospect Park was frozen in a winter dawn with patches of snow reflecting a brackish sky. Bare branches fused into volumes of pure black. Something even darker rushed across this vision; then the expanding light displaced confusion and regret. Dawn rolled out across the trees and meadows.
It’s a day for cleaning up and throwing out, the last week of 36 years in my job; so many illusions to trash. Keep your eyes on the pavement. Don’t look back. One more turn of the pedals. Look down and believe.
Today he will teach his last class. In a few days, he will be ex-professor of French.
Who would believe this blurred slow motion? Forget those classes, meetings and commutes to work. All those eyes half listening, while you drone on about French literature. Thirty-six years gone, evaporated. Tough climb. Look down just beyond the front wheel.
He left the window with the light flowing clear and certain over the trees and grass of the park, his beloved park, their salvation from the city. Time for the morning routine: eating and drinking, brushing and flushing. Same old stuff. The ride was his wake-up call, starting with the gentle park — then busy streets and intersections, the bridge and the chaos of Lower Manhattan. He liked the exercise, and looked forward to it twice a day. New York adrenalin was his daily drug. This morning he felt toasty crossing the park. He froze on the bridge, and his gloved hands were numb when the building appeared. He warmed up climbing the six flights of stairs. His faithful office was always welcoming: warm in winter, cool in summer. It would be missed. Now to give the last lecture, brave the retirement party and finally confront his office with the harsh news of their imminent separation.
About the Author
David Tepfer is a resident of Paris, France. He grew up in Eugene, Oregon, USA. He is a retired biologist. His professional CV (attached) includes 56 primary research articles (published in peer-reviewed, international journals), 32 review articles (published in scientific journals, symposia volumes and professional books) and five biotechnology patents. His scientific papers have been cited over 6,000 times.
David Tepfer is currently a concert promoter, including instrumental chamber music, vocal recitals, tango music, contemporary dance and jazz. He is a live event and outdoor videographer and photographer (YouTube channel: 683,000 views)..
He is a cook, gastronome and outdoor adventurer (cycling, skiing, mountain climbing, free diving and kayaking. He invented the sport of cross-country and downhill roller skiing, appearing on the “The Tonight Show” in the USA and on “Sur la Scelette” with Philippe Bouvard in France.
His son, Dan Tepfer, is a world-recognized pianist.