Monday, February 27, 2017

The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen

I happened upon this title while searching for an ‘end of days’ read. The concept that has riddled numerous societies and populations for millennia intrigues me and I search out good books on the subject whenever I can. Although a fictional work, the author ties in a historical background and largely unknown historical facts to produce an engaging and thought provoking work that I stayed up late nights pondering.

A coming of age story set within a very plausible setting, the beginning of the book reads fairly slow and deliberate, with easy to justify moral complications. As the reader, I started to get slightly bored over the lack of pitfalls and any foreboding. Then it hit. Little forebodings spaced just off context that drew me into the story and started the elements of which I cannot stop pondering over now. The subtle provocations at the governmental system, the background of human nature, and thoughts on how little human influence has on the larger scheme of life and death still play within my mind today.

I will be ordering this hardcover for my personal collection. I will ensure my children read it, and hope they ponder the past to bring light to the future.

Reviewed by Dan Rice

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Lucky Bastard by Joe Buck

Buck, Son of legendary broadcaster Jack Buck, spins a self-deprecating tale of growing up in the shadow of his famous father. From an early age, Joe was allowed to tag along and watch his dad do the play-by-play for the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team.

Brutally honest about his own and his father’s shortcomings, Buck tells how it was growing up with the most famous father in St. Louis, who never turned down a speaking engagement or a request for an autograph. As he begins to blossom in his own broadcasting career, Joe faces stinging criticism and accusations of favoritism from the baseball community.

Lucky Bastard is a quick read filled with an inside look at the famous; from Mark McGuire’s steroid fueled home run chase, to personal anecdotes about Derek Jeter, Ken Griffey Jr, and broadcasting partner Tim McCarver. A light, entertaining glance behind the scenes from one of our top broadcasters.

Reviewed by Bill O'Brien