Notes from the Porch Review by Glenda

Notes from the Porch Review by Glenda

Notes from a Porch

Review by Glenda

 

Notes from the Porch
Tiny True Stories to Make You Feel Better about the World
By Thomas Christopher Greene
Rootstock Publishing
Montpelier, VT

Memoir

 

 

 

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in this mighty mini, Tom invited me to spend an afternoon with him as he introduced me to his neighborhood, his family, and his dog.

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Moments of memories. This is the entirety of the book from the front cover to the back cover.
I had never heard of Thomas Christopher Greene before I picked this book out of a lineup of Memoirs on the virtual NetGalley shelf. I had just finished a bland novel and I was in no hurry for another.
I like porches, I want one, maybe there was one inside. There was, and Tom invited me to spend an afternoon with him as he introduced me to his neighborhood, his family, and his dog.
Like a nosey neighbor, I sat quietly absorbing the conversation Tom was carrying. I laughed out loud, I scoffed, I smiled, I mourned and then there were the parts I HAD to gossip about.
“This, here, listen to this…” I sat further up in my armchair, took a sip of water, and cleared my throat.
“Oh for goodness sake put you’re f’n phone down and listen to this…”
My husband looked up with one eye while the second one strangely stared down at his phone. I don’t know how he did that. It was enough. I proceeded…
Tom’s voice is uncluttered and a pleasure to hear. I truly love when an author can use few, poignant words, to completely draw the reader into their space. It was a complete pleasure to read this mighty mini. I was sad when I turned the last page, well… Happy to meet Tom’s face there, but damn sad it was done.
While the cover is nothing fancy. The title did draw me to read it out of all the other memoirs I was flipping through so that says something, and I was curious. Would these stories make me feel better about the world?
They did 😀
I rate Notes from the Porch a solid 4 out of 5 and I would recommend it for anyone who needs a break from, well, life. Tom’s life was nice to escape into. This book would also do well on your shelf or as a gift for visitors and friends who love a quick entertaining and enjoyable read. It’s definitely a book I will recommend.
Thank you to NetGalley for the ARC. it was a pleasure to read, and it’s a pleasure to review.

 

 

In the News – Spinning on a Barstool

In the News – Spinning on a Barstool

 

In the News –

Spinning on a Barstool 

 

 

Thank you to Jenna Hauck at the Chilliwack Progress for taking the time to investigate and write this story. The link to the news article is below *** NOTE*** the article is full of Spinning on the Barstool Spoilers so if you want the surprise ending, read the book first 😀

Shoebox Baby – Review by Glenda

Shoebox Baby – Review by Glenda

Shoebox Baby

Review by Glenda

 

Shoebox Baby

By Sharon Bruce

Self-published/Tellwell Talent 

Memoir

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… and there on the warming shelf, laid the ‘Shoebox Baby’.

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Shoebox Baby. You know with a title like that, there is a story worth reading.

I used Tellwell Talent to publish my book and so naturally I scrolled through other books, and other authors who also used this service, and there on the warming shelf, laid the ‘Shoebox Baby’.

For the price of a double-double and a donut, I bought the Kindle and started to read.

Three generations of eastern Canadian women quickly pulled this westerner into their lives as told by Author Sharon Bruce. Her style is uncomplicated. Her voice, distinct. Her storytelling, simple. This ‘Bruce Thrice’ had my nose riveted until the last page was swiped. 

The story of Grace was unadorned and engaging with her earthy character and windswept humor chinked into the crevices of her life. Grace’s life was difficult. It pulled me back to a time when houses were cold and food, scarce. I chided myself a lot this week when I complained internally about living in a 5th wheel. It’s warm, I have a heating blanket and food, I’m damn lucky!

I loved everything about Grace and I’m incredibly thankful to have picked up this book to meet her! It’s not surprising that Grace’s wit and resilient nature were passed on to Sue. I loved Bruces’ ability to present the sweet disposition of Sue without mincing the difficulties of dealing with her strong character as she aged. 

While Bruce put just enough of herself into this book to make her presence known the fact that she stood to the side in a supporting role made this memoir sing beautifully. 

I have heard it said that our lives are remembered only to the third generation, then, there is nobody left to remember those who once lived. This family is blessed to have moments of their lives preserved through the story ‘Shoebox Baby’, and, while for sure those connected in this family bloodline will appreciate reading about those that came before them, it was also a super read for those of us who don’t know them, who only just met them, while sipping tea in a wintery week as the year turned from 2023 to 2024. 

I loved the title and it’s what immediately drew my attention to this book. The cover supported the title simply. I would recommend this book particularly if you enjoy a nicely paced memoir. If you enjoy true stories of life, of uncomplicated people, and particularly if you need reminding that life today isn’t nearly as difficult as it was back then. I would even encourage those who have their noses in fiction to pop into this book, there is something riveting in reading real.  

The Shoebox Baby is a memorable memoir. Nicely done Ms. Bruce!

 

 

And there I was… Just minding my own business Book Review by Glenda

And there I was… Just minding my own business Book Review by Glenda

And there I was… Just minding my own business

Review by Glenda

 

Just Minding My Own Business – a hybrid memoir

By Rawge Jones

Self-published

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It took over sixty years for the tule fog to lift off the San Joaquin Valley, and when it did, there he was, leaning against a fence post, just minding his own business.

 

 

 

Some people love ‘Romance Novels, others, ‘Mysteries’, still others love ‘Fantasy’,

I love a good ‘Memoir’. I suppose my mind thinks it’s easy to create something that doesn’t exist but it’s damn more interesting to read about what does exist. Maybe I just like people. I don’t know. I do know that a ‘Memoir’ can be a difficult thing to pull off. If the writer isn’t careful or skilled, a memoir will read flat and self-centered. I’ve yawned my way through more than one.

I opened ‘Just Minding My Own Business’ without expectation.

I started reading and I smiled, and as the Dust Bowl migrants moved, I knew me and this memoir would get along just fine. Rawge Jones is an American Storyteller.

Rawge pulled this reader into the San Joaquin  Valley gently, with a bit of a drawl, blowing dust away. There were moments when I was certain he was Steinbeck’s son as I melted into the first part of the book. As the story continued the feeling shifted. Personal experience marked with good humor and careful retrospect, entertained and pulled this reader forward into Rawge’s life and thoughts, and it was here that I met a guitar-picking philosopher. 

The subtitle -hybrid memoir- is a perfect term for this book.

I loved the title of the book and the cover depicted the easy nature of the man within it.

If you enjoy memoirs this one won’t disappoint, Rawge’s style of writing was easy and enjoyable. While so much of his story resonated with me it was the beginning part of the book that was most impressive. Having just said I love ‘Memoirs’, there is something in the beginning part of this book that sings ‘You must write a novel!’ I appreciated his wit and his wisdom but I fell in love with the voice that told me the story of his parents.

I rate Just Minding My Own Business a solid 4 out of 5 and would recommend it to those who enjoy Memoirs, unassuming philosophy, and American storytelling.