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Country: North America, US, United States
City: 77092 Houston, Texas
This is an excellent start at revising presidential reputations in light of what we now know. Until the mid-1960's there was an unspoken rule in the press to turn a blind eye to personal flaws and political failures of politicians, thus leading to absurdly inaccurate public perceptions of presidents like JFK, FDR and Woodrow Wilson. For example, FDR has been the subject of several recent studies which pretty much conclusively prove that he actually lengthened the period of the Great Depression. SeeFDR's Folly: How Roosevelt and His New Deal Prolonged the Great Depression. Also revised is FDR's role in instigating WWII. SeeChurchill, Hitler, and 'The Unnecessary War' (Unabridged). Since historian failed so spectacularly at their jobs, save a few cries in the void likeThe Roosevelt Myth, it's good that the truth is finally coming out,however slowly the American people seem to be in accepting it. After all FDR's portrait is on the dime! He must be great!
When I first read the description of the book, I was quite intrigued. The idea of combining the classic "Count of Monte Cristo" and juxtaposing against the brilliant wit of the great Sherlock Holmes seemed like a tall order. Skepticism aside, I started the book and finished it within two days because I enjoyed it immensely. I read Count of Monte Cristo in high school and became enthralled with Sherlock Holmes in my years after college. Ever since watching the new "Sherlock" BBC TV series, I've been craving pretty much anything Sherlock Holmes related.
This book did a great job of re-telling a story that I appreciated in my younger years and it did so using one of my favorite literary/film/TV characters. The story alternates between the story and Sherlock's interactions with his esteemed colleague. The writing was excellent and I thought the transitions were handled very well. When you're writing something that's based on sound literature, you assume character/storyline development is going to be good, but transitions are an are where you might fear the reading to burdensome. Happily, the author pulled it off.
Age wise, I'd recommend this to well read teens and up. The only caution I must give is that there are references to drug and alcohol use. This is an inherent element of the literary Sherlock Holmes and it didn't bother me, but I know that some people have lower thresholds for what they consider appropriate for a younger audience.
I think the people who are really going to get the most enjoyment are those that are familiar with both pieces of referenced literature. If you love one element and aren't familiar with the other though, then this is a perfect opportunity to introduce yourself to something new. Overall, I highly recommend it and I am impressed. Finding good independent fiction isn't easy, but this one managed it.
This is the only photobook I've purchased in my life. I've been a big fan of the blog for years, and his photos are not only a great sampling of the vibrant community we live in (New York), but an incredibly humanizing and deeply moving view into the lives of people we often pass every day and never notice. If only I get catch Brandon on the street and be added to this wonderful project!