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brookwood road:

Memories Of A Home

Reviews from Writer's Digest national reviewers


“Brookwood Road” is a coming-of-age story framed nicely by the setting of the family’s house, beginning when they moved out, then going back over the author’s childhood up until then.

His stories of his adventures with his brothers, fictionalized, but based on his memories and their experiences, are heartwarming. The author also brings a sense of humor to the book, and that helps even out the more harrowing anecdotes.

Readers who had similar childhood experiences will find comfort and familiarity with the story, and those who lived a different life will enjoy a glimpse into another world.

But ultimately, it’s the story of a family, particularly the three brothers, but also their strong parents and grandparents, and their faith. The “poisoned by sin” passage on pages 216 and 217 is a great summary for the rest of the book: Frank learns, loves, and grows.

Readers may have an issue with the fact that it’s rarely clear how old the boys are, and that lack of context can be distracting and make it hard to grasp the full significance of what’s going on—something that a 12-year-old is doing has a whole different meaning that if an 8-year-old were doing it.

The cover and interior formatting a professional and nicely done.

Judge, 23rd Annual Writer’sDigest Self-Published Book Awards.

Score 3.6 on scale of 5.0


***


​This is a very readable recounting of a childhood growing up on a Southern hog farm. There are the expected but still entertaining childhood adventures and discoveries. I like the humor that underscores many of the anecdotes, and there is a clear affection by the author for his world. The narrative is in the third person, a somewhat unusual point of view for a memoir, although there is a first person afterward. I appreciate the author’s candid and creative approach when he writes that the stories are mostly true or “should have been true.” That license tends to make for a more readable memoir. There is a need for more dialogue and perhaps a review of the existing dialogue which sometimes reads a bit formal. Still, that perennial affection for the Southern environment gives a steady thread to the narrative. Little moments, like the first color TV and the opening lines from Petticoat Junction, make the memoir all the more real.  The cover photo of the Vaughan farm in rural Georgia is very appropriate, and it makes the reader wish there were a few more. And the back cover photo of the key players also works well as an invitation into the work.

Judge, 23rd Annual Writer’sDigest Self-Published Book Awards.
Score 3.5 on scale of 5.0