Praise for Rich Marcello’s The Latecomers

The Latecomers is a profound and philosophical novel about aging and connection, which offers hope and a new vision for how we as a society could age well. Filled with poetry and mysticism, the novel takes the reader on a journey from which he or she will inevitably be changed.––Rebecca Given Rolland, author of The Wreck of Birds

The Latecomers entertains and enlightens in equal measures––exactly what these dark times call for.” —Mark Spencer, author of An Untimely Frost

I found Rich Marcello's absolutely outstanding new novel, The Latecomers, gripping, original, thought-provoking, and very clever. I cared deeply about the main characters, and the book kept me guessing, kept me reading compulsively to find out what happened to them.––Sophie Powell, author of The Mushroom Man

Sometimes when I read books like this, I get amazed as to why they are not making it to the bestselling list along with other books which have been made popular solely due to a strong PR game. ………. The Latecomers too because the writing of this book is so fantastic.

The prose is as mesmerizing to read as the story is deep and heart-touching. The plot of the book, however, is something very unique.

But more interesting was the mystical touch to it which kept the book engaging. Its uniqueness is in the emotions that it portrays. The book is very human and reads like a life experience more than a narration. Yet, at no point was my desire for fiction ignored. It is hard to write this book without turning it into a rant where I just wish everyone would read the book so it could be better discussed. I have not read any other books by this author but seeing how good this one was, it would be a pleasure to read the rest. - Pallavi Sareen, Alex The Shadow Girls Blog

Rich Marcello writes with the grace of a poet. The narrative is filled with vitality and is steeped in elegance. Reality crosses over seamlessly into mythology and mysticism. ……. Close relationships in a variety of forms are core to the story. The Latecomers is life affirming and beautiful. Marcello writes a story that is truly unique in a world where corporations can buy loyalty and there seems to be little grace in aging.

Beautifully written, the narrative is poetry as prose, as the words caress the reader in this journey of life and love, aging and generativity, joy and loss, and with a spirituality that exudes from the very first page. The power of stories within the story is creatively done. With Marcello’s lyrical writing of an exceptional story, this book is sure to be on the reader’s top list of books for the year. - RECOMMENDED by the US Review of Books

An impressively crafted and inherently riveting novel by an author with a very special knack for effective and entertaining narrative driven storytelling.

There is much to recommend in this unusual, outstanding read. From its exploration of too-familiar challenges in the lives of aging Americans to its unexpected injection of moral and ethical questions and the process of going after the biggest question of all (life's purpose), literary readers who enjoy strong contemporary stories of transformation have much to relish in The Latecomers.

Its incorporation of mystical and philosophical elements places it a step above the anticipated story of an aging couple's conundrums and changes. - The Midwest Review of Books

The Latecomers is an onion of a book, which demands willing suspension of belief in favor of the slow reveal of answers to questions about the human condition. Flawed, strong, weak, murderous, loving, and above all human characters are asked to come to terms with that hardest of all questions: What are you willing to give up in the name of remaining human?

The Latecomers is a stunning achievement. Getting to know Maggie is like meeting the Queen and realizing she’d be fun to grab a coffee with—and that the guy she hangs out with might be charming and attractive, but she’s the one who needs to be in charge. The writing is beautiful, the flawed characters are three-dimensionally human, the plot both surprising and inevitable.


Rich Marcello tackles ageism in his latest novel The Latecomers Ageism is the last acceptable prejudice in society and renowned writer, Rich Marcello, is out to firmly change this in his latest novel The Latecomers.

……….Rich’s novels are always intelligent, timely and deal with life’s biggest questions including self-discovery, love, loss and aging. In The Latecomers, Rich urges us to challenge age-based prejudices in ourselves and in society. The thought-provoking tale also encompasses themes of how ageism distorts our view of old age, the messages we absorb from society, the false divide between young and old, and why the solution to ageism needs all generations to get involved. - BREAKAWAY DAILY MAGAZINE

The Latecomers, by Rich Marcello, is the gripping account of the intertwined lives of main characters, Charlie and Maggie. The two have a bond that far surpasses that of most couples. I have to say that I am amazed at the dynamic the two share in the outset of the book. From the beginning, readers are able to see the connection and feel it on an almost visceral level. Interestingly enough, I can’t say that I view the relationship as one I would label with the word “love.” Theirs is more a matter of necessity; it is as if their very souls are one and know no separation.


Literary Titan

The Latecomers by Rich Marcello is a very profound, enriching and meaningful read about an ageing couple, which makes the reader question about a lot of things including one’s purpose in life. But more importantly, it shows us, beautifully and quite truthfully, how life goes on beyond one’s retirement and how we are destined to fulfil our purpose in life irrespective of our age.

It is a beautifully written book, with lyrical prose and with utmost sensitivity on a topic which many people avoid to even acknowledge. This book makes you think hard about your life, it’s valued and, as I said before, one’s purpose. It has a beautiful message wrapped in complex layers of philosophy made entertaining with a sprinkle of magical mystery.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who likes to read on subjects related to philosophy and life’s purpose. Also, people in their middle-ages and above are sure to relate to this book on a much deeper level.
★★★★ - The Reading Bud

To devote yet separate: The Latecomers is a literary love letter to personal growth

When you hear the word surrender, you might think of loss, of giving up, of accepting defeat. But what if you surrender to what will come? What if you surrender to inevitable change? Rich Marcello’s The Latecomers is a satisfying exploration of spirituality and love through care, mystery, and magic realism.

The spirituality and interspersed mysticism also add a uniqueness to the novel. We get plenty of opportunities to grow closer to our characters and listen to their elevated conversations about how to make themselves happy. With this intellectualism and dedication to spiritual well-being, the narrative acts as a clever outlet to share the need to take care of our bodies, hearts, and minds in order to be our healthiest selves.

Add in an almost-dystopic conversation about addictive drugs that are good for you and a worthwhile antagonist in a money-hungry medical corporation, and we’ve got ourselves a pretty fascinating novel as a whole here. It’s a relatively slow burn, and some of the language could prove difficult at times, but altogether it’s an enjoyable read that kept me satisfied during the entire read. If you pick up The Latecomers, I’m confident you’ll feel the same. - Independent Book Review, By Joe Walters

The Latecomers, which revolves around an esoteric truth involving Norse deities, may remind readers of Ishmael or Sophie’s World. Marcello delivers memorable characters in Maggie and Charlie. Compelling and realistic, both are passionate idealists who sometimes succumb to less admirable feelings. Their bond is believable and touching, especially toward the novel’s poignant conclusion. The Latecomers is a rousing emotional adventure story that should appeal to readers of literary novels with big ideas.

The characters are deep and complex, and their perspectives on life reflect this. Marcello does a great job creating intimacy between the characters as well. Readers will feel connected to the characters right away and grow attached to them as the story develops.

In The Latecomers, readers ride the waves of the characters’ emotional journey to self-healing and self-discovery. This deep, thought-provoking novel navigates the complexities of all aspects of life––though our bodies grow older, our spirit lives on, and this novel explores the road to acceptance of that fact. Marcello has created an ethereal work of magical realism that will inspire readers with clarity, wonder, and inspiration.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
- The Book Review Directory

Intricately woven, lyrically written… A poignant tale!

An elegiac portrait of an old couple exploring the nature of deep relationship, Marcello’s latest is a poignant study of a couple’s journey through life as they set on to unravel the true purpose of their lives.

Marcello’s prose is masterful, the narrative smooth, and the hefty dose of science-fiction mixed with magical realism adds to the intrigue of the story. The book is as much about “the very nature of the age-old relationship and its intricacies” as it is about the questions of aging, wisdom, and the fabric of the modern society. This absorbing story of relationship intricacies will appeal equally to lovers of magical realism and literary fiction. - THE PRAIRIES BOOK REVIEW

For all its trappings of adventure, suspense, and mystery, THE LATECOMERS is really a story about forcing community and finding oneself after the world has written you off for being too old in a society that long ago ceased to value the hard-won perspective that’s earned with experience.

Rich Marcello’s highly original novel THE LATECOMERS blends humor, suspense, and poetic prose while tackling big issues like graceful aging, chosen families, corporate ethics, personal fulfillment, and the unending quest for self-discovery, and brims with philosophical depth about the world and life’s possibilities.
IndieReader Approved

This book took me longer than I expected to finish – not because it was boring, uninteresting or didn’t capture my attention, but for the exact opposite reasons. I have never wanted to sit down and take as much in from a book as I have with this one! I took it slow and enjoyed one chapter at a time, letting each one settle in my mind before starting the next. This book gave me hours of joy and filled me with emotion effortlessly, and it has quickly become one of my all time favourites. Just writing this is making me want to pick it up and start it again from scratch (although I am aware of my overflowing TBR list). After being left utterly speechless from this book, I urge everyone to read this review until the end!

I’ve never read such artistic, colourful and gentle words in a book before. Reading the opening was quite a surreal experience, and I don’t really know how else I can describe it! This book felt like a breath of fresh air from the first line I read, the words flowing perfectly from sentence to sentence.

The author always kept me guessing the more I read, and I loved the build up to learning more about this mystery trip. The description of everything surpasses anything I could have expected; foods, sights, thoughts and feelings were carefully crafted into words so delicate, yet vivid in my imagination.

Maggie…... This particular character, as well as Charlie’s character, are some of the strongest, most memorable people I’ve come across in a book. I found myself becoming attached to them both over time –

The gentle ending, the emotional ride and the lifelong lessons I took away from the book made this particular story one I’ll keep with me for a lifetime. Since finishing that last page, I simply haven’t been able to think about anything else!

Overall thoughts.

This book had a incredible impact on me. The story was so deep and involving, and was told by an author who somehow knew the exact tone and style I love to read. Each sentence was delicately crafted to fit into the bigger picture, each page left me longing for more of both Charlie and Maggie’s story and ultimately, their destiny. The story filled me with pretty much every emotion, and I really have to applaud the author for doing everything right. I would wholeheartedly recommend this book if you’re looking for the love aspect of a romance, but also the suspense and adventure that comes with a good mystery.

A huge congratulations to Rich Marcello on creating such a masterpiece of a book! And thank you for providing me with hours of pure reading joy.

Overall rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐


The characters are deep and complex, and their perspectives on life reflect this. Marcello does a great job creating intimacy between the characters as well. Readers will feel connected to the characters right away and grow attached to them as the story develops.

In The Latecomers, readers ride the waves of the characters’ emotional journey to self-healing and self-discovery. This deep, thought-provoking novel navigates the complexities of all aspects of life––though our bodies grow older, our spirit lives on, and this novel explores the road to acceptance of that fact. Marcello has created an ethereal work of magical realism that will inspire readers with clarity, wonder, and inspiration.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Philosophical, and deftly written, The Latecomers by Rich Marcello offers a sincerely unique novel about connectedness and age.

Poetic writing, with an intriguing plot and thought provoking story, The Latecomers is a book that shines light on the taboo subject of aging, and what love and sex means after sixty.

Worth reading.


Winner #RBRT 2017 Award for Best Contemporary Fiction

That kind of spectacular writing, interspersed with actual poetry, business vignettes drawn from life, and development of a deeply flawed, complex, and charismatic main character made this one of the best books I've read this year. For anyone with a technology background, The Beauty of the Fall is a must read. For everyone else, it's a present right now, even as fall's beauty heads to winter. –– Barb Taub for Rosie's Book Review Team

Five Star and Gold Award Winner

From the very first paragraph, Rich Marcello drew me into his book with a command of the language that I liken to a poet's. Passages like this one, "He put his head down, tried to rekindle the wildfire he helped birth years ago, tried to daydream down a riven path." and this one, "Don't look down, the pinpricks have spouted and are covering the new carpet in blood." provided me with ample proof early on that Marcello was a real deal literary composer, a master of the language, and a wordsmith with soulful depths.

But beautiful language alone can't make a reader keep reading. Original characters with powerful character arcs and a compelling story to keep all the characters growing is fundamental. No problem there, either. From Dan to his counselor to Willow to his son, stronger characterization is front and center. I know Dan--he reminds me of the author Richard Bach. I know Willow, too, this wild child, compassionate, changer of the world woman who is always strong, always courageous even when her heart is broken. These characters kept me reading.

Then we arrive at the story. Characters and language need movement, need story, setting, pace, tension. Marcello has these covered, too. Set in New England, the vivid colors of the seasons remain clear in my brain long after I finished the book. Authors who take the time to divide their books into parts and give them names always receive a grateful nod from me. I like to know the structure of a story before I begin reading, and I like rolling back to the Table of Contents to remind myself what's next in this journey. The Beauty of the Fall's Table of Contents is especially brilliant; titles like "So it Spins," "Build from the Sky Down," "Spectacles, and Halos and Code" promised each chapter would carry its own mini-story and all the mini-stories would merge to form a powerful narrative.

Themes of forgiveness, trust, simplicity, honor, technology as healer, and non-violence echo through the pages of The Beauty of the Fall and held me captive until the end. If I had to name a gripe, it would be that the last chapter was unnecessary. The story should have ended with "The Good-bye Return," but I can understand why, for closure's sake, Marcello included "In the Coming."

The Beauty of the Fall will appeal to readers who love a compelling, well-written story with elements of literary fiction, technology fiction, and romantic fiction. Marcello doesn't write the type of literary fiction that prizes language over story. He writes the type that uses beautifully soulful language to real unique characters living compelling bittersweet lives.––The Hungry Monster Book Review

Ten-year-old Zackery Underlight is dead. His father Dan however, is just learning to live again. There is a certain haunting lyricism to this remarkable book about a father coming to grips with the death of his only son - a death he feels he caused. There's also a tortured search for self-renewal and forgiveness that extends far beyond the natural grieving of a parent for his child . . . These carefully paced reveals of a deeply conflicted character - coupled with a fascinating glimpse into how high-tech start-ups are born - make this one of the year's best works of literary fiction . . . Its rich depth, satisfying substance, and willingness to examine key social issues such as global warming and battered women, force the reader to confront the truly inconvenient truths all around us while remaining invested in the story's key players . . . This is a rare read, and one to be savored, especially now, when seeking respite from the current worries of an uncertain national - and international - future. It's good tonic for the soul; a restorative tale of perseverance against all odds . . . Five-plus stars to Beauty of the Fall. From start to finish, it never disappoints. ––Don Sloan, The Midwest Book Review

The level of detail Marcello puts into the descriptions of the business and its establishment is astounding, hinting at countless hours of research to get it right. Even better, for a topic that could very easily be dull, he manages to keep it engaging throughout.
It's not just the technical stuff that Marcello can turn into something great, his dialogue is, for the most part, realistic and engaging, and he often treats the reader to beautiful imagery and a great turn of phrase.
The Suits are black, genderless, and fill the elevator. As they slowly unload, walk toward my office, they scan everything-- the flash-frozen employees watching their entrance, the desks filled with proprietary info, the cappuccino maker that would never make its way into one of their government offices. Maggie, who is standing next to me, who I insisted attend this meeting despite her strong objections, turns ashen, and a fidget subjugates her hand.
There's plenty more to the book than just the new business -- and how it plans to change the world. The reader is thrown into Dan's life as he struggles to find and keep a meaningful relationship, as he fails to cope with his son's death and as he looks for answers in all the wrong places. ––

In an Oyster Shell - This was an emotionally raw, well-poised, literary fiction that was unique with a fullness that is richly fulfilling.
The Pearls -The narrative was raw, poignant and provocative. This was a primarily character-driven story. With well-developed characters, that worked in favor to the story.
The main character was flawed and compromised a lot in the story. Yet, he had a moral backbone that exceeded every questionable choice he made. The author put the character through some detrimental circumstances that were intense. The character understandably broke but always rebounded with a resiliency that kept the reader turning page after page.
Realistic contemporary components with pop culture references were interlaced with well-composed believable fiction. It gives the reader a wide point of reference that makes the prose pleasingly palatable.––

The Beauty Of The Fall is a unique story that’ll grip you right from the start till the very end. It is a story full of heartache, sadness, dreams and possibilities – everything that makes this book a complete package.
I liked the basic concept on which The Beauty Of The Fall is based upon. To have a software that brings truth to selected conversations is not only unique but also very intriguing. Especially in times like these, the application of measures mentioned in this book will surely make for a nice topic of discussion.
The characterization was good and I was able to connect with the main character, Dan Underlight. The secondary characters were also well developed, but I was glad that the author let the main lead, Dan, steal the show. ––The Reading Bud

The Beauty of the Fall tackles emotionally transformative topics, explores father-son relationships, and working through grief. This mulitlayered novel explores social issues such as climate change, domestic violence, equality for women, and examines the internal struggle of corporate and political America against the people. The Beauty of the Fall suggests that in order to progress, we must communicate with each other and look at technology based solutions to many of our current social problems. Five Stars. ––Breakaway Daily

Verdict: THE BEAUTY OF THE FALL is well-named--it is almost a poem in prose about the ability of the human spirit to find beauty, new hope, and new purpose even through loss, grief and despair. THE BEAUTY OF THE FALL is a poetic book, which shows us the internal world of a driven, devoted, thoughtful and very human protagonist through grief and triumph, love and heartbreak. Hope shines through this book even at its darkest moments, and it offers a quiet guide on achieving true happiness and peace in a world that sometimes seems to reward all the wrong things. The book is told entirely from Dan’s point of view, giving an intimate, personal perspective that brings the reader right into the story. That kind of first-person perspective requires, for its best effect, a fully-developed and complex protagonist to do its thinking, and Dan does not disappoint. He has enough flaws to make him interesting, but at heart, he is a warm and likeable guy, trying as hard as he can to contribute something of value in the world, to heal his own broken places, and to find real meaning in loss. The author’s writing style is thoughtful, almost lyrical, giving the book’s events an emotional rhythm and deepening their meaning. ––IndieReader

The Beauty of the Fall has a great deal to recommend it to readers of literary fiction: the excitement of a business venture, the poignancy of a primal loss and a host of unusual characters. Marcello doesn’t pull his punches when describing Dan’s self-destructive behavior (born of his grief and helplessness), nor does he force a happy ending. —blueink Review

''Few novels are as intelligent and relevant as The Beauty of the Fall. Almost none is as eloquent, compelling, heartbreaking, and ultimately, uplifting.'' ––Mark Spencer, Faulkner Award winner and author of Ghostwalking

''Rich Marcello's The Beauty of the Fall takes the reader on two intriguing journeys: the exciting coffee-fueled rise of a high-tech start-up and the emotional near-collapse of the man behind the revolutionary company, his personal journey through grief and healing.'' ––Jessamyn Hope, author of Safekeeping

''Rich Marcello's third novel, The Beauty of the Fall, intermixes poetry and prose fluidly throughout the manuscript, and in fact, incorporates poetry as one of its major themes. As a practicing poet, I was swept away by the lyrical language, the characters, and the unexpected twists and turns in the plot. Overall, a great and inspiring read!'' ––Rebecca Givens Rolland, author of The Wreck of Birds

I didn’t want to stop reading The Big Wide Calm. It has a great empowering message that fits in with this blogs theme of individual empowerment. One telling trait of a great book is reaching the last page and craving more, which is what happened at the end of The Big Wide Calm. This alluring story is full of surprises making it difficult to put down. You may think you know how things will end, but the twists and turn are not predictable; you will be surprised at how each one plays out. A plus that you don’t always find in stories about musicians on their road to fame are the enchanting lyrics to the songs that Paige creates throughout the story. The lyrical development is an integral part of her journey and one of my favorite parts. I recommend this book for anyone who loves to read about following dreams, lasting friendships, intimate romance and of course music. Even more this book offers a broader message of seeking our own paths in a world that is at best confounding. ––

I highly recommend The Big Wide Calm to lovers of music, of strong female characters, of bigger existential ideas. It was a heartfelt journey of self-discovery, of forming chosen families, and of finding life-altering love. Go check it out. You won’t regret it. ––

The writing gets ragged and raw when it needs to. Marcello doesn't just write about the glitz and glam of the music industry, he drags us to the gutters of world most of us won't ever get a chance to see. His writing can switch gears to lyrical and evocative at times, too. Marcello really spreads his sophomore book wings in this novel and tackles the first person POV of a young woman surprisingly well. ––Moonbird Book Reviews

The whole Bid Wide Calm songwriting and production processes were very interesting with the intimacy and emotional involvement between songwriter’s which made it cool to experience. The preparation (full carafe of coffee) the position (legs crossed on the floor) and even the writing methods (cursive, landscape not portrait) were intriguing relating to the whole creative process. The drive, the ambition, the paths a determined musician must take to achieve her dream was also very inspirational (getting everything handed to you wouldn’t make for an interesting story now would it?). ––

The Big Wide Calm. Marcello's novel has a lot going for it. Well-written, thought-provoking, and filled with flawed characters, it meets all the basic requirements for best-of-show in the literary fiction category. ––The US Review of Books

In The Big Wide Calm, Rich Marcello captures a unique voice in the character of Paige Plant, who is intriguingly attractive in the most bizarre way possible. Named after Led Zeppelin members, twenty-something Paige is the kind of YA protagonist that puts others to shame. She is reminiscent of some of the most memorable protagonists in other bildungsroman novels—Alaska Young from Green’s Looking for Alaska, Holden Caulfield from Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, Hazel Grace Lancaster from Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, Josephine March from Alcott’s Little Women. You will root for her from the very beginning, get excited with her in her journey, hope with her that the recording goes well, and share the butterflies in her stomach as she realizes that she’s getting closer to her dreams. ––Bookbeast

I loved Marcello’s The Big Wide Calm, which I read first, so I appreciate reading a lot of poetry and music again in The Color of Home. I think this strategy makes his books unique from its contemporaries and stands out from modern fiction overall. It’s like paying for one thing but getting two additional stuff for free. As always, another winning book from Rich Marcello. ––Bookbeast