When Memories Come Calling
By Tom McDonald
As with a few other similar stories, I offer this to future writers seeking reviews. Please do not infer that the inclusion of this book is opening me to regularly reading this genre. It is not. This one happened to catch me on a good day and the exception was it sounded intriguing to me. Just be aware, I have turned down others and will do so again. But, you never know…
The author shares memories of growing up in the Appalachians in the 50’s and 60’s. Short anecdotes about his family, getting a piano, riding a moped in the mountains, a randy donkey, whistling, sneaking smokes and watermelons, and many more.
If you want easy to read and enjoyable stories, this is the book. Nothing deep or philosophical although it brushes against some issues. Some amusing stories, but I think the majority of them will touch upon your own personal memories of childhood because a lot of these are what many kids experienced.
Father: drove a Packard, carpenter, small stature, smoked
Tom McDonald: 6 siblings, former Navy, former teacher, attended the university of Alabama, married with 2 children, color blind
Mother: played piano, siblings, used snuff
Grandfather: blue eyes, carpenter, widower, pipe smoker
Mary Ellen Lindsey: Tom’s aunt, 8 siblings, mentally disabled, smoked
Daughter: played basketball and baseball in high school and basketball in college
George: a donkey
Margo: Tom’s wife
A nice cast of amusing and interesting characters and I think the author had just the right amount of information for each. No long diatribes, just the high points.
For a memoir, there isn’t a lot of dialogue, but some the snippets of words do show the personality of the characters. There is an amusing exchange between Tom and his wife in one of my favorite stories about beavers and beepers.
One misspelled word that I found. Otherwise, good solid writing. Easy read. No ‘high brow’ language. No profanity, although it is referred to. Illustrations and photos.
My two favorite stories are the one mentioned above and George, the donkey, which is why I including George as a character.
Of course, I couldn’t be completely familiar with his youth since I’m younger, but some of it resonated. And it’s not all about his youth. There are stories of his marriage and his children.
A good book, a good read, and a good one for sharing.
So, as to ranking. As with many others, it comes down to the ‘likeability factor’. I had a ranking in mind about half way through, but by the end changed my mind. With many of the low ranked stories, I can’t wait to reach the end. With this one, I was content just to see what the next story was. So, this went from Green to: