Colin Preston lives for the Beatles and John Lennon
Falls for the most beautiful sophomore on campus
His life is about to change forever
An entertaining coming of age novel about friendship, first love and betrayal
Praise For Colin Preston Rocked And Rolled
"With Colin Preston Rocked and Rolled (Davanna), first-time novelist Bert Murray manages a feat that seems to have escaped many writers, mainly women, who try for a Young Adult readership but wind up delivering predictable, generic, forgettable adolescent chick lit. Murray, who delivers here a kind of hard-core Catcher in the Rye, has a good ear for the lingo and speech rhythms of bright 19-year-olds, particularly young men who, despite their vulnerability looking for love, obsess about scoring. The story, set in 1985 at a leafy, upscale college in the Northeast, is full of references to rock that serve as mood markers, especially for the protagonist, Colin Preston, for whom The Beatles are almost substitute friends. An intelligent, likeable guy but (and who isn't at this age) troubled by a first serious love and ambivalent about his parents and career, undergoes "an education in the geography of the human heart." The story has engaging authenticity, though the unfortunate title may be off putting. For sure, though, the depiction of the extent to which sex, drugs and drinking consume many college students should be sobering, considering the continuing rise of the cost of going to college. One sympathetic teacher, who befriends Colin, cannot compensate for what older adults might well see as the questionable value of higher education."
—Joan Baum, Dan's Paper (July 20, 2012)
"Murray draws Colin with immediate emotional pungency, and he doesn't lose the beat even when the situations turn slapstick.... A coming-of-age story with plenty of sting, where love is not only blind, but it blindsides."
"Colin Preston Rocked And Rolled is a novel that does a wonderful job of capturing the voices and lives of a certain time and place. The use of music – both music contemporary to the characters and Colin's beloved Beatles (already, of course, at the time of the novel, classic) – works especially well. Instead of using words, Colin, when in the grip of a strong emotion, puts on an appropriate song. Overall, the compactness of the story and the ease with which one identifies with Colin and his situation create an inevitability about the events that has an almost tragic quality as well as a strong structure. I felt I experienced it all with Colin, and it was a pleasure to read."
—Meredith Sue Willis, author of Ten Strategies to Start Your Novel and Out of the Mountains
"Bert Murray has produced a novel that is simultaneously absorbing, moving and funny - a character-driven page-turner that captures lightning in a bottle, and preserves a moment in time for eternity. I found the Beatles (and especially John Lennon) material compelling on several levels - as a fan, yes, but more so as a symbol of a generation gap, a figure for a grasping adolescent (or adult) to use when trying to figure things out, and as a touchstone - something every character and situation can be informed by."
—John Altman, author of The Watchmen and A Gathering Of Spies