(Review) Please Enjoy Your Happiness by Paul Brinkley-Rogers

Publisher and Publication Date: Touchstone. June 6, 2017.
Genre: Memoir.
Pages: 368.
Source: Free copy from Touchstone.
Rating: Very good.


Paul Brinkley-Rogers is a Pulitzer-prize winning war correspondent. He covered the wars in Vietnam and Cambodia as a journalist. He has worked for Newsweek and The Miami Herald.
Please Enjoy Your Happiness is a memoir of a young man who was in a remarkable relationship with an older Japanese woman. The time period was 1959. The place was the port city of Yokosuka, Japan. He was in the U S Navy. She worked as a hostess in a bar. She noticed him sitting alone and reading. She loved poetry and this was the first step in their relationship. They had a kindred love of art and literature.
Paul Brinkley-Rogers is the young man. Kaji Yukiko was the Japanese woman. For Paul, this was a period in time where he had a life changing and memorable relationship. The relationship was brief. The story is a personal examination of that time. And, Paul states t…

(Review) The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty

Publisher and Publication Date: Harcourt Brace. 1982.
Genre: Fiction. Short Stories.
Pages: 648.
Source: Self-purchase.
Rating: Excellent.


I’d had this weighty book in my to be read pile for a few years. I’d started and then became distracted by other books. I became determined to finish this book in 2017 and the goal was met.
Several years ago I took a writing class. The teacher exclaimed that not all writers can write short stories. It takes a certain style and talent to pull off a story in a few pages. I did not fully understand this comment until I read, The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty. While reading this collection of short stories, I studied Welty’s style. She packs a punch in the first sentence or paragraph. She does not wait for a later moment to begin the crescendo for storytelling. I noticed an even pace to all the stories. They are not rushed. They are not too slow. They have a steady rhythm. I wondered if she listened to a metronome while she was writing (jus…

Big News, I Have Moved to WordPress

I am in the process of moving all book review posts to a new blog I've created at WordPress. For ten years I've blogged and written reviews at Blogger. Most of these years I've maintained two blogs and even three blogs for a while. My plan is to have one blog where all book reviews will be posted. During the month of July, I will post reviews at all three. Starting August 1, I will post only at the WordPress blog.
I do not plan to delete content from the Blogger blogs.
Thank you to all my readers who have followed me through Blogger, Twittter, Google+, Pinterest, and email.

My new WordPress blog:

(Review) Poetry and Ponderings by Diamante Lavendar

Publisher and Publication Date: WD Publishing. February 2017.
Genre: Poetry.
Pages: 120.
Source: Free copy from Diamante Lavendar.
Rating: Very good.

From award-winning author of Breaking the Silence, Poetry and Ponderings: A Journey of Abuse and Healing Through Poetry by Diamante Lavendar.
A raw collection of religious poetry and prose based on one Christian woman’s experiences of being abused, and how she healed herself with God’s love in order to move past the assaults.
In this rare collection of nonfiction Christian poetry and prose based on real life experiences, Diamante Lavendar, a victim of abuse, shows the reader the raw emotions of pain, hate, and denial that occur before a victim of abuse can find a way to heal from the pains of assault. Knowing herself the very difficult journey of being a victim, Diamante was abused as a child, and turned to alcohol and drugs to numb the pain. Many years later, she started to heal under God’s watchful eyes and was able to fin…

(Review) Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

Publisher and Publication Date: Ballantine Books. March 7, 2017.
Genre: Historical fiction, World War II, Holocaust, Ravensbruck.
Pages: 512.
Source: Self-purchase.
Rating: Excellent. 

Included are eight black and white photographs and three maps.
An "Author's Note" provides historical information on the characters. It also shares Kelly's research for the novel. 

Lilac Girls is based on the lives of several historical people during World War II. It is also the story of the Rabbits, who lived to tell their story at Ravensbruck concentration camp. 
The year is 1939, and Caroline Ferriday is a French consulate living in New York City. She helps the new arrivals, fresh off the boat, who are wealthy displaced citizens leaving France before Nazi Germany invades.
Kasia Kuzmerick is a teenager who lives in Lublin, Poland. Kasia' father is the director of the postal center. Her mother is an artist. Her sister, Zuzanna is a doctor working in a hospital. Kasia and her…