MacGregor’s Final Battle

MacGregor’s Final Battle is a novel following the last journey of the protagonist Mac MacGregor as he undertakes a cross-country trip to visit his cousin in Alaska after his wife Anne of forty years dies, and he learns he has stage four brain cancer. He chooses to forgo cancer treatment and make the most of his last months alive. On his journey, he follows the Lewis and Clark trail National Historical Trail in his RV, which traces the route of the Lewis and Clark expedition of 1803 to 1806, taking him from Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, to the Pacific Ocean.  

The book is based loosely on the author’s own life. Elements of the recorded history of America and the Lewis and Clark trail are peppered throughout the story. I enjoyed the character development throughout the book. Mac starts off as a depressed, lonely man; he is grieving and intends to shut out the world around him and his own family. Through the first half of the novel, his grief is palpable. He is portrayed as a stubborn, straight-talking character who comes to terms with his own mortality and failing health. He meets Kate, a Nursing Assistant, at a dinner in Saint Louis, where she is working part-time, and she persuades him due to his ill health, he should not be undertaking the journey on his own. Instead, she offers to accompany him as his caretaker. With some reluctance, he agrees, and they continue his trip together.  

The novel frequently examines the theme of colonialism in America and the destruction of natural habitats in the name of progress. There is a motif throughout the story of the loss of a simpler life in the face of modernity. Mac is a military veteran of the Vietnam war, and he meets other Veterans on his travels. The ongoing effects of military service are discussed through Kate and Mac’s dialogue throughout the novel. I found the novel to be a slow burner as it takes a little while to get going. Some of the plot is somewhat repetitive as the characters undertake many similar activities as they move along the trail. Hence, the action builds up slowly rather than the tension and interest for the reader increasing as they move along their journey.  

However, as the book progresses, you become more invested in the characters. Finally, in the last half of the novel, the story starts to pick up its pace. The relationship between Kate and Mac develops, and Mac’s tough exterior softens. The story ends as a sweet love story between the two.

Pages: 286 | ASIN: B0BQKNG2YN

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The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on January 1, 2023, in Book Reviews, Four Stars and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.


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