An emotionally compelling and ultimately optimistic remembrance.

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SIX FUNERALS AND A WEDDING

Registered nurse and life coach Odgers’ debut memoir depicts her struggle and determination to move forward after multiple devastating tragedies.

While living in San Diego in the late 1970s, the author met her future husband, Bruce, a U.S. Navy pilot. They were married in 1979, and he later became a pilot for Delta Airlines. The couple moved to Plano, Texas, where their three sons were born. In 1992, they moved to Ramona, California, where they had “9.3 acres” overlooking the Santa Maria Valley. Bruce designed every aspect of their custom-built house as meticulously as he approached his career as a pilot. But 15 years later, in 2007, Santa Ana winds attacked with a vengeance, and a wildfire swept through town. Odgers’ beautiful home and all of its contents were destroyed—and this was only the first in a series of tragic events. The author writes in her introduction that just one year later, “in a span of eight weeks, I lost my husband, my father, and my youngest son” in “traumatic ways.” In separate chapters, Odgers writes movingly about each of her deceased family members, describing in detail her evolving and unique relationships with each one over the course of their lives. She also effectively defines the particular contours of her grief in each instance, which range from crushing pain to sad acceptance. The book is essentially several short, separate vignettes that, taken together, paint a heartbreaking portrait of love and loss. The final two chapters are infused with joy, however, detailing how she found the resilience to rebuild her life and find a new love. Now, she says, she’s ready to share her story in order to offer encouragement to others who may be navigating grief: “Don’t stay in the fertile rut of victimhood,” she writes. A satisfying complement of family photos helps fill in the narrative.

An emotionally compelling and ultimately optimistic remembrance.

Pub Date: March 17, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-73409-390-2

Page Count: 284

Publisher: Kings Park Press

Review Posted Online: Feb. 4, 2020

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

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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