Running As Fast As I Can: A coming-of-age novel about one boy’s struggle to find a real family

Five Star Review with Readers Favorite

Author John Graham displaying his Book - Running as Fast as I Can

Author John Graham displaying his Book – Running as Fast as I Can

Award from American Writing Awards for Running as Fast as I Can

Award from American Writing Awards for Running as Fast as I Can

Set in the turbulent 1960’s, Daniel Robinson proves he may be shaped by his abusive past, but not condemned to repeat it. A journey for love and forgiveness

This particular journey belonged to Daniel Robinson, but his story belongs to each of us.”

— Viga Borland Readers Favorite

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS, USA, December 26, 2023 / — Local resident and founder of the Ohio non-profit Good Samaritan Home, John David Graham, is set to touch lives in a whole new way with the release of his debut novel RUNNING AS FAST AS I CAN on December 1, 2023. This story, born from over a decade of writing and a lifetime of diverse experiences, has already earned a five-star review from Readers’ Favorite, which hailed it as “truly a masterpiece.”

His current novel, although fiction, is the very real story of too many of us who struggle to overcome generations of poverty, neglect or abuse that have left us totally incapable of the life, and love, we desperately want. It is everyone’s story because we all deserve a second chance.

RUNNING AS FAST AS I CAN is a literary exploration of the human spirit, following the life of Daniel Robinson. Growing up in the harsh environment of mill slums surrounding Pittsburgh, Daniel’s sole desire is a family who will love him. Readers will embark on a transformative journey with Daniel as he navigates a tumultuous era, including the 1960s hippie movement, racial violence, and the anti-war protests at Kent State. On his journey, Daniel tries to make a family with all the misfits he meets on the road, like Bobby, who couldn’t escape what he had done in the jungles of Vietnam; James, who struggles to overcome his heroin addiction; Elijah, who runs a homeless shelter as penance for his years lost in a bottle. But he owes his life—several times, to Doc Samuels, his college mentor who teaches him when broken people lean on one another, both of them can walk straight again.

Daniel discovers the enduring power of love when he meets Kate Fitzgerald, a woman running from her own demons. “She saved me in every way a person can be saved,” he said.

Daniel best described the healing power of their love. “You said my life was written in pencil, and I would get lots of second chances. That’s when I knew I loved you.”

John David Graham’s novel bridges the gap between literary and commercial fiction. Drawing inspiration from heartrending narratives like “Forrest Gump” and “Where the Crawdads Sing,” Graham’s debut brings to life a traumatic period in American history while addressing intense emotional and social issues that remain relevant today.

This compelling story touches on themes of family, redemption, love, and the pursuit of a better life. As the founder of Good Samaritan Home, a non-profit social service agency supporting ex-offenders, Graham’s experiences working with those seeking a second chance in life provide a profound and authentic backdrop for the novel.

RUNNING AS FAST AS I CAN is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the belief that, no matter our background or circumstances, we all deserve a second chance.

Graham’s debut novel has already garnered several awards, with an Honorable Mention from Author Shout, and Finalist from the prestigious American Writing Awards.

“This wasn’t a book; this was an experience.”


Goodreads review

“Robinson’s struggle to be someone and be a better father than his abusive, drunk father. It is a great book that reads like it is a real memoir and really takes you back to the 60s when hitchhiking was okay and a Coke was 5 cents. I loved the book.”


Amazon review

“I felt Daniel’s pain and his courage throughout his journey.

Several scenes even made me cry as I relived those events in memory.”


Goodreads review

“It is a captivating book that offers a profound reading experience. It delves into various aspects of life that resonate with all of us, provoking deep introspection into one’s own journey. It portrays an authentic depiction of a society in constant change and uncovers the gritty truths and unforeseen obstacles that life frequently presents. I found “Running As Fast As I Can” a fascinating read that I was glad to have had the opportunity to review. I LOVED IT.”

David Hearne

Authors Reading

“This particular journey belonged to Daniel Robinson, but his story belongs to each of us.”

Viga Borland

Readers Favorite

Author John David Graham has worn many hats in the business world. Now, at 75, he believes the best writing occurs after a life has actually been lived. “When we have had time to develop calloused hands and a tender heart.” For interview request for John David Graham call 409-656-4625 or contact him through his website.

David J Hearne
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