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Everyday People: Profiles from the Garden State
     

Everyday People: Profiles from the Garden State

by Al Sullivan
 

In this time of ever-shorter news stories telling us everything that’s wrong with the world, it’s a nice change of pace to read about someone like Felix Addeo, who takes time out of his busy schedule to teach middle school kids what it’s like to be an accountant. Or biomedical engineer Lois Ross, who twice a year leads a group of volunteers to

Overview

In this time of ever-shorter news stories telling us everything that’s wrong with the world, it’s a nice change of pace to read about someone like Felix Addeo, who takes time out of his busy schedule to teach middle school kids what it’s like to be an accountant. Or biomedical engineer Lois Ross, who twice a year leads a group of volunteers to clean up a local pond. These are just two of the ordinary, yet extraordinary, people profiled in this collection of feature articles by New Jersey reporter Al Sullivan. Through richly detailed stories—a kind of writing that has all but disappeared from our local newspapers—about small-town people in extraordinary situations, Sullivan depicts the characters that enliven life in the Garden State. While his stories always have a strongly local feel, each contains an element of the universal that draws in readers whose interest lies not in a specific location, but in the diverse experiences and stories of people who live in and shape a community.

Sullivan has written about people from nearly every walk of life, from minister to prostitute, from jail warden to undercover cop. Everyday People takes readers to the funeral of AIDS activist Ronald West, Jr., and to the office of James Delson, owner and operator of Jersey City’s Toy Soldier Company. You’ll follow Sullivan from the Hoboken workshop of violin maker Jon Van Kouwenhoven to the rooftops that are the “office” of chimney sweep Ron Simpson. You’ll go on a ride with the Glen Ridge Volunteer Ambulance Squad and along the Hackensack River with Captain Bill Sheehan, founder of the Hackensack Estuary and River Tender’s Corporation, which monitors the river’s ecology.

You don’t have to live in New Jersey to recognize the people in Sullivan’s stories. They are the librarians and tax assessors, attorneys and hotdog vendors, firefighters and bee keepers, poets and politicians, that make every American town special. In Everyday People, Sullivan records their stories for us all to read and remember.

Editorial Reviews

Hudson Reporter
Sullivan characterizes his book as a brand of 'new journalism' blending newspaper and novel writing, which he affirms is the dream projector any weekly newspaper reporter. Sullivan's profiles are categorically grouped, and the first third of the book contains numerous profiles of elderly people, nostalgically recollecting their departed way of life, like the story of an aging honeybee keeper slowly forced to surrender his pastime.
Jersey City Reporter
Everyday People features 70 profiles of individuals Sullivan has encountered during his years as a beat reporter for the Hudson Reporter Associates and the Worrall Community Newspapers in Bloomfield. . . . 'A lot of the stories in the book are with older people who represent a way of life that is no longer around,' [Sullivan says].
Weehawken Reporter
Like the personalities portrayed in his book, Sullivan's life is the stuff that provocative profiles are made of.
author of Jersey Diners and The Great American Road Trip: U.S. 1, Maine to Flori - Peter Genovese
Praise for Everyday PeopleSkunk hunters, tax assessors, riverkeepers and social workers: Al Sullivan tells the stories of his 'ordinary' people extraordinarily well.
author of New JerseyAs Coastal Heritage and A Guide to New Jersey's Revolutionar - Mark Di Ionno
Sullivan has lived every journalist's dream: find real people and tell their stories. As a reporter and writer, he explores the human side, which is, after all, the only side that matters.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813529509
Publisher:
Rutgers University Press
Publication date:
06/01/2001
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
264
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

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