A touching read for anyone, but especially poignant for parents raising children with similar conditions.


A father remembers a special daughter.

Parents are never fully prepared for the birth of a first child. But when Alexander’s daughter Lindsey was born, he and his wife had no idea what joy and heartache the next 16 years would bring. Soon after her birth, Lindsey was diagnosed with Down syndrome and severe heart defects. During the first few years of her life, she underwent several open-heart surgeries to correct the defects and enable her to be as active as possible. The doctors’ efforts were well rewarded, as Lindsey grew into an energetic, loving, outgoing girl, adored by her parents, brothers, extended family and many friends. In this short memoir, Lindsey’s father recounts the traits that made her special, both those related to her physical and mental handicaps and her strong personality and spirit. While enduring numerous illnesses and hospital stays, as well as rigorous daily medication regimens, Lindsey attended school, marched with the drill team, participated in the Special Olympics, taught sign language and attended the eighth-grade prom with her boyfriend. In sharing both fond and painful memories, as well as personal photographs, Alexander not only documents his daughter’s remarkable life, but also passes on the infectious joy with which she approached the world and the lasting impact she had on those she left behind. He closes with brief reflections on her final days and how he struggled to find peace after her death. In this debut, Alexander’s narrative occasionally meanders, but the prose is heartfelt and engaging.

A touching read for anyone, but especially poignant for parents raising children with similar conditions.

Pub Date: May 1, 2006

ISBN: 978-1-58982-359-4

Page Count: -

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: May 23, 2010

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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