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A Sound Like Thunder

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Excellent storytelling

    In November 1941 in Fairhope, Alabama, sixteen year old Rove McNee fears the return of his father, a drunken schooner captain who turns mean with the alcohol. He knows his dad will need no excuse to drink, but the teen believes his mom is cheating on his dad. The only recent respite for Rove and his younger brother Julian have been their Granny Wooten, but she just died.------------------ On the day of his beloved grandma¿s funeral, Rove is shocked when he observes his drunken father Dominus threaten their German neighbor, Josef Unruh, which leads to the captain¿s imprisonment for attempted murder. Rove wonders if Josef is the man his mom is stepping out with and if his dad knows that so therefore threatened him with a knife. Instead Josef gives to Rove, a boat needing repair, which the lad begins to do even as he moves onto the vessel as he at peace only at sea and with class mate Anna Pearl Anderson.------------- The characters keep this fine historical from becoming too nostalgic at a time of the beginning of the end of the innocence with Pearl Harbor and social issues like alcohol and abuse just coming to the surface. Though Rove is the center protagonist, it is Dominus' misbehavior at Granny Wooten¿s wake that sets in motion the events that impact everyone and break up a family. Though the social issues are not explored that deeply especially in comparison to the author¿s THE POET OF TOLSTOY PARK and in light of society not wanting to know, fans of mid twentieth century tales will enjoy Sonny Brewer casting fishing nets on the era.------------- Harriet Klausner

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