I read this as a teenager decades ago and decided to reread it again after my own teenage son developed an interest in Stephen King's work. I gave himI read this as a teenager decades ago and decided to reread it again after my own teenage son developed an interest in Stephen King's work. I gave him this book as a Christmas gift. It feels good to have some connection with him and I hope it keeps him reading as I know King's work sparked my own interest in books. It's as good, if not better, than I remember it from my teen years. I enjoy King's ability to narrate the story from multiple viewpoints and not just using first person accounts also using excerpts from accounts in the future which gives you the impression that the event's had a much bigger impact than what's told in the book itself. It makes you wish you knew more than what being told.
Another interesting aspect of the book was it's picture of adolescent bully. I don't think it was an intentional focus but King certainly brings to light an aspect of growing up that many of us experience but doesn't always get talked about. It's a subject that in recent years has grown more out in the open. I think part of the books appeal was bully victim revenge aspect. Many who experience bullying I'm sure fantasize about exacting revenge of their persecutors.
If you're going to start reading Stephen King I feel this is the place to start. ...more
After seeing this book mentioned all over the place in regards to this year's election I had to see what all the excitement was about. Although it doeAfter seeing this book mentioned all over the place in regards to this year's election I had to see what all the excitement was about. Although it doesn't necessarily answer why poor white working class are attracted to the Republicans and the Donald Trump phenomenon this may give some clues as to what their experiences are and why they are angry.
Even though Vance is from hillbilly country in Kentucky and Ohio but it could be almost anywhere in our country. Some parts of it even reminded me of my own up bringing in Massachusetts as a child of a working class mother who was divorced with three kids. We also were helped by grandparents and are very thankful for them.
The authors story is also one of overcoming hardships and battles he fought along the way. One theme that comes out of this book is how others who support us along the way can influence us and give us a step up. Vance got it from his grandparents, the Marines, his sister and others who helped him overcome his situation. It reminds me of the Hillary Clinton book "It takes a village" in part that our success is built with the support of others.
Vance does credit his success with the help of others but even he doesn't have a single catch all answer for the majority of others in a similar situation to overcome poverty, addiction, joblessness and just plain poor decisions. No one government program, education initiative or jobs program will solve all the problem's which some of the blame also lies within their own attitudes. Though though the author does say that doesn't mean we shouldn't help "put a thumb on scales" to help those in need. That one time may just mean the difference in someone's life. ...more
An excellent book about Union veteran's of the American Civil War. It was certainly an eye opener. Judging by recent scandals in our modern day VeteraAn excellent book about Union veteran's of the American Civil War. It was certainly an eye opener. Judging by recent scandals in our modern day Veteran's Administration we still have work to do regarding taking care of our soldiers who return after the battle is done. This subject until now seemed to be an overlooked aspect of the Civil War. It should be a must read for modern day soldiers also. ...more
An intimate look at the families of Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Roosevelt. rather than just look at what they did in history this takesAn intimate look at the families of Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Roosevelt. rather than just look at what they did in history this takes an intimate look at the individuals and how they related as a family. In other words this is a family focused story account and outside events are treated as secondary priority. Everyone's strengths and flaws are looked at. If anything could be taken from this is that even though they may have had money and prestige they were imperfect and dysfunctional.
Theodore, Eleanor and Franklin each had to over come adversity in their lives. Theodore fought to over come his childhood illness's and losing his mother and first wife(soon after giving childbirth) on the same day. Eleanor who over came losing first her mother then her Father(Elliot who was Theodore's brother)who committed suicide for untold reasons. Franklin grew up struggling to gain independence from an overbearing mother and then to be struck with polio just as his political career was about to take off.
We learn how a rivalry developed between the two sides of the family. The children of each side struggled to live up to their parents image and strengths but many times coming up short. They are human just like the rest of us.
I did enjoy listening to this and certainly learned a lot from it. I recommend this if your looking for a more intimate look and these remarkable families that were a big influence on our country. ...more
What could be said about John Wayne that hasn't been said. He became a character unto himself. I thought I knew a lot a Duke Morrison but this was a dWhat could be said about John Wayne that hasn't been said. He became a character unto himself. I thought I knew a lot a Duke Morrison but this was a decent and thorough accounting of his life. From his dirt poor kid from Iowa to a legendary Hollywood movie star. He defined the American masculine model for decades. The book is well written and paced. Details of his personal life are intermingled with his on screen activities. I did enjoy this book and it has spurred me to watch more of his films. With his long career I was amazed how many I've missed or overlooked. I'm even watching one now as I'm writing this(Hondo). Perhaps the most moving part was the end of his life battling cancer. It remind me of my Dad's battle with it. It's worth a reading if your fan of John Wayne. ...more
A simple and easy to read book on being a divorced Dad. I found a lot of practical advice and encouragement in these pages. I know I've slacked in thiA simple and easy to read book on being a divorced Dad. I found a lot of practical advice and encouragement in these pages. I know I've slacked in this and the book has given me encouragement to go on and I'm not the only one feeling this way. A good read for Dads looking for a clue to matter in their kids lives and to hang in there and persevere. The kids are worth it. ...more
I was already a big fan of this book already before listening to this audio version. I've read both the original and extended version of this book andI was already a big fan of this book already before listening to this audio version. I've read both the original and extended version of this book and it still doesn't get tiresome. I was not a big fan of the original mid 90's mini-series version though as I've yet to sit through the whole thing. I have heard that another remake is in the works. With 45 plus hours to listen to its pretty daunting to sit through. It does start a little slow as King builds up the plot and the characters as what can seem like an eternity. He did not rush when it came to this story. Even though I knew the story pretty well I still picked up stuff I missed before. After awhile the time flew by and the forty-five hours seem to not be as long. Things I picked up differently were that I found Fran irritating and self-centered. I was also more sympathetic with the brilliant but misled Harold Lauder. I did enjoy this one and recommend it to fans of the book or even of Stephen King in general. ...more
I had caught the end of the movie a few times but had never saw the whole thing. I knew it was based on a bestselling book so I was hesitant watchingI had caught the end of the movie a few times but had never saw the whole thing. I knew it was based on a bestselling book so I was hesitant watching from beginning unless I read the book. The audio performance was excellent. It was as at least equal to the movie version.
I enjoyed listening to each character(Skeeter, Abilene and Minnie) as they each told their story. Each one worked hard, sacrificed and learned more about themselves. The story covers a deep issue of race in Mississippi where it was in the early 1960's which the South(and the rest of the country) was going through many changes socially. With recent racial unrest in this country today this story still has relevance even 50 years from when it took place.
The story although serious is not without it's touching and even humorous moments. As I implied before the audio performance was excellent. The story flows smoothly as it seemed I just flew through this one. I highly recommend this book. Now I can watch the whole movie from the start. ...more
I originally bought the book after viewing the movie, of the same name, it was based upon. This does tell the story of all six flag raisers. How theyI originally bought the book after viewing the movie, of the same name, it was based upon. This does tell the story of all six flag raisers. How they came together for one famous moment that immortalized them forever in US military history. the story is told by James Bradley, son of John Bradley who was a medic on Iwo Jima and one of the famous six. It also explores how the survivors dealt with the fame and themselves dealing with the horrors of battle, which today we call PTSD also known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. An easy to read book and a must read for US military history fans. ...more
It was easy to read guide book for the getting ahead in the business workplace. Most are common sense tips, although some you may not have thought ofIt was easy to read guide book for the getting ahead in the business workplace. Most are common sense tips, although some you may not have thought of before. It does emphasize the use of good ethics but may ride the line at times(but never crosses). On a side note I notice a lot these books obviously emphasize work in office/business environment which makes me wonder if some of these authors know their are blue collar jobs out there too. Most of the tips can be applied to blue collar jobs too. I this is a quick read and should be kept for future reference. This is a type of book you could pick out any page and work on one idea a time. ...more
This is one I think everyone who interacts with other human beings can find something to relate too. Many of ideas Dale Carnegie promotes is common seThis is one I think everyone who interacts with other human beings can find something to relate too. Many of ideas Dale Carnegie promotes is common sense but how common is it really? This is a true classic and is still relevant to this day.I highly recommend this one. ...more