Tag Archives: review

“Tomorrow’s Bread”

Tomorrow’s Bread -by Anna Jean Mayhew

  • a DougInNC book report
  • “More than a Review”

This is a writer that a writer can appreciate. Anna Jean Mayhew worked eighteen long years to grow her first book, “The Dry Grass of August.” In four years she delivered “Tomorrow’s Bread.”

Another striving author will surely recognize the perseverance and achievement in these endeavors.

Mayhew builds a story from her experiences living in Charlotte, NC, from her late-found interest in one area of the city, and from her research. She adds to the mix by speaking to experts on some elements in this book.

Another writer comprehends all the ingredients in the stew. The reader finds the completed picture in the cookbook takes quite some time to realize from the author’s descriptive pages.
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7*; 1917 Movie (2019)

Particulars:
World War I battlefield
Based on stories handed down

This modern ‘you are there’ film brings the viewer into the action, as did A Private War. It hardly seems possible to film action scenes in the hopeless trenches of WWI, but that is accomplished well here.

“1917” sticks to the mission portrayed for two soldiers, a match for “Saving Private Ryan” in terms of staying on track. Both are graphic. While the WWII tale is more epic in scale with its depiction of war, this WWI film is more inside the fate-accepting mind of the lonely soldier.
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“Bleachers”

Bleachers -by Joseph Mills

  • a DougInNC book report
  • “More than a Review”

The reader finds fifty-four very short missives centered around the Saturday morning youth soccer experience. But this book is marginally about the sport. Rather, it is about people and parenting.

The format makes the work easy to read. Lovely leverage of language makes it fun. The stories deliver entertainment and insight, at times bringing the gift Robert Burns sought, “… to see ourselves as others see us.”

I enjoyed the views from “Bleachers” without being a parent. I expect anyone inclined to digest these morsels will savor them as well. Readers outside the U.S.A. could be challenged by references steeped in domestic culture.

Reflection follows on passages from author Joseph Mills, chosen from many worth highlighting.
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8*; A Private War (2018)

Particulars:
Journalist: Marie Colvin, January 12, 1956 to Feb 22, 2012
Photo Journalist: Paul Conroy
Director: Matthew Heineman
Based on Vanity Fair article by Marie Brenner
Produced by Charlize Theron

This film’s cinematography is the modern template for a truly ‘you are there’ sense of place. The Killing Fields of 1960s Cambodia have spread — seemingly everywhere around the world.

See action at dirt level and sense the dust; hover around the bigger picture; deliver the explosive and evasive. But avoid letting the action chase the characters’ personalities into oblivion. This movie delivers all of that.
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“Flash Mob”

Flash Mob -by Robert O’Connell

  • DougInNC book report
  • “More than a Review”

This is a fun and funny look at people, personalities, and problems. Did the author enjoy pouring this story out of his witty brain as it seems he must?

My ADDENDUM to the back cover teaser:
“You’ll laugh, You’ll cry, You’ll dance,
You’ll die”-ALOGUE YOUR WAY THROUGH …
… “FLASH MOB”
by Robert O’Connell
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“The Sound of a Broken Chain”

The Sound of a Broken Chain-by J.D. Cortese

  • DougInNC book report
  • “More than a Review”

To be all things to all readers, aspire to write like J.D. Cortese in “The Sound of a Broken Chain.” YA novel? Check. Science novel? Check. Literary novel? Check. Culture? Mystery? Drama? History? Yes, yes, yes, yes.

The setting is 1978 Buenos Aires, Argentina, yet your narrating protagonist is American Edward (Edgardo) Weston, all of 17 years old, smart, alone, and introverted. One friend and one girl change everything.

The natural conversational language of this work captures teenage thoughts and life, while flourishing phrases and deft descriptions make it a pleasure for all readers.
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“Meditations” of Marcus Aurelius

Meditations -of Marcus Aurelius

  • DougInNC book report
  • “More than a Review”

“What WERE you thinking?” Such an inquiry arises daily … usually as rhetoric … rarely answered. Fascinatingly, in this compilation of “Meditations,” the question is answered by Emperor Marcus Aurelius. From nearly 2000 years ago, we have his own (translated) words, a penetrating, insightful, recorded litany of what drove the man and who he strove to be.

While ruling the great empire and fighting the northern hordes, Marcus captured his unequivocal ruminations. For this is not a history of battles, or Rome. It is, per the introduction, “… the innermost thoughts of his heart, set down to ease it, with such moral maxims and reflections as may help him to bear the burden of duty …”.

It’s the second century! Yet we have this (direct) personal record of one born in A.D. 121, emperor in 161, dead in 180. This is on par with getting the history of the Second World War in Churchill’s books. But M.A. delivers at-the-moment pondering while W.C. writes in review of actual events (which he could then bias in his favor). Continue reading “Meditations” of Marcus Aurelius