Brambleman

Brambleman

by Jonathan Grant

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780983492122
Publisher: Jonathan Grant
Publication date: 03/28/2012
Pages: 478
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.06(d)
Age Range: 3 Months

About the Author

Jonathan Grant is an award-winning writer and editor (The Way It Was in the South: The Black Experience in Georgia), and Brambleman is his second novel. His previous novel, Chain Gang Elementary (also published by Thornbriar Press), tells the tragicomic story of a war between a reform-minded PTA president and an authoritarian principal. A Thousand Miles to Freedom, his screenplay based on the real-life adventures of escaped slaves William and Ellen Craft, was recently optioned to Hollywood.
Grant grew up on a Midwestern farm and graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in English. He is a former newspaper journalist and served for several years as a Georgia state government spokesman. He lives in suburban Atlanta with his wife and two children.

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Brambleman 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wasn't sure initially what to make of the other-worldly aspect of this story...and I'm still not! But this vibrant bunch of characters have a very compelling story to tell about good, evil and all the gray area in between.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wasn't sure about this book when I first started reading it. It started off a little slow, but after a few chapters I couldn't put it down. Nearly 1300 pages is a lot to digest, but the hours seemed to melt away as I was immersed into the series of unfortunate events that happen to Charlie, the primary character. There are many supporting characters interspersed throughout the story, and often times you wonder about their importance as you read. The story takes an interesting turn of events in the last few chapters and brings their relevance into clear view.
sringle1202 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
This book took me on an emotional roller coaster ride. I flew through it despite it's length. I loved it...all of it, and there isn't much more to say than that. I highly recommend it, especially to those people who are from the south, with parents or grandparents from the "old school". It really opened my eyes to how much things have changed here in the south.
Rottie on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Brambleman by Jonathan Grant was and interesting story on a lot of modern day and past issues. I enjoyed the book and was always left wondering where it would go next. I enjoyed the list of characters and the heaven and hell story. I would recommend this to others to read.
Sudimatleon on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Kathleen Talton was getting old, already suffering from Alzheimer's Disease. Her husband, Thurwoood Talton, a retired Georgia State University history professor, died while trying to get his manuscript Flight from Forsyth published. He was hit in the head by a beer bottle throwing youth while marching for for civil rights in Forsyth County. Thurwood died a week later, and Kathleen believed it was caused by the youth who threw the bottle. Kathleen waited many years then decided she needed to have her husband's work completed and published. So she did something she hasn't done in years, she prayed. Not for forgiveness, not for happiness and not many of the things most people pray for. She asked for justice, companionship, vengeance, completion and closure. It was a most interesting prayer!Charlie Sherman, father of 14 year old Ben and daughter Rebecca (Beck), has been a stay at home dad for a long time. He had opted to stay at home so he could write his book. Prior tho staying home he had been a freelance writer and an editor. His wife Susan, supported his decision because she made more money at her job then he did, and that mattered a lot to her. The problem was, nothing Charlie wrote got published and Susan was sick of him. After a bitter dispute with his wife, his daughter had called the cops because she was afraid. Charlie got his butt kicked out of the house and concluded that Susan had wanted him gone for a long time.Walking in the rain, extremely upset, Charlie has a George Bailey moment. (George Bailey is a character from classic film It's a Wonderful Life, my all time favorite movie) and gets ready to jump from an overpass. A strange, seemingly random accident below him on the road has him realizing that if he takes his life, he won't see anymore weird stuff. Deciding to think things through a little more, he heads off for some peace, guiet and coffee. Instead he finds Trouble, though who and what he is Charlie's not sure of. And boy does Trouble SMELL!. When Trouble tells Charlie he has a job for him to do he finds himself agreeing to go and meet Kathleen. She hires him to finish up and publish her husband's manuscript and he can stay at her house in the basement well he does so. Charlie is a little leery but finally agrees and signs a contract. He figures things can't get much weirder, boy is he wrong!Things aren't just weird anymore, they're Old Testament weird! People were dying; Kathleen's daughter got boils after upsetting her mom, as did a pharmacist; burning buildings and, the kicker for Charlie, the contract he originally signed to complete Kathleen's husband book, the ink had turned to blood and if Charlie tried to get out of it, he paid with his life.You'd think with all this going on, Charlie would have enough to deal with but no. His wife Susan and the rest of her crazy relatives were all somehow tied in to Charlie's mess with the manuscript. Charlie has to think fast and move faster before something else bad happens. There is way, way more in store for Charlie, his wife Susan, her nutty family, Kathleen and Trouble. What does Trouble really want?And the biggest problem of all is Charlie knows that good and evil are somehow involved in all this, but what side is Charlie actually working for and how will he find out? Will Charlie survive? Will anyone survive? I found myself reading faster and faster as the story twisted and turned more and more. I really enjoyed the pace and the story in a story aspect that came out of the manuscript that Charlie had to edit. Some of the characters are just that, characters! Good, bad, hicks and politicians, men and women and children all had interesting thoughts and actions. My only real complaint was the length of the novel. While it held my attention all the way through, there were times I thought things could have been said just as well with several less words or pages. All in all though a good albeit long read. Please note that some people might be offended due to certa
SAMANTHA100 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Charlie Sherman is married, a stay at home dad and a writer who suddenly finds himself homeless as the result of a domestic issue with his wife. While considering suicide he meets a strange creature who seems to be electrically charged and, to put it mildly, smells. Since the creature doesn't give his real name, Charlie calls the "supernatural creep" Trouble. As it turns out, Charlie chose the name well. Trouble offers Charlie a job which comes with a place to stay. The job is to complete a book started by Professor Talton who died some time ago. Talton's widow, Kathleen, wants the book published and allows Charlie to live in her basement and gives him an advance. The book, Flight from Forsyth, takes on a life of its own in Charlie's hands and what the book reveals is shocking. Jonathan Grant's novel, Brambleman, is about what Charlie uncovers about the events in Forsyth, a county in Georgia, from the early 1900's. His research leads to yet another story which takes him to the present.The characters in the book are unforgettable. Kathleen has some dementia but what is even more poignant is her ability to punish people who anger her. She inflicts a fast occurring outbreak of boils-similar to a pox. Dana/Rodika/Arca, who was originally known to Charlie as Dana, presents herself as an art dealer. She is exotic and Charlie is attracted to her. Since much is not as it seems, he is shocked when she is arrested by the FBI during their first date. He learns she has a violent history and asks himself "What kind of a woman would participate in an armed attack on an orphanage?". The rest of the characters include his mother-in-law who hires not one but two assassins to get rid of Charlie. A bus driver who appears when least expected and who also appears as a social worker (a temporary job) when Charlie is being investigated for child abduction. Add the violent and loathsome members of his wife's family and the less than honorable law enforcement officers to the mix and cast is complete.This book is action packed and deals with sensitive issues including racism. A bit of fantasy is included and it does not distract from the story line. Charlie Sherman is a man of honor whose life took many unexpected turns and Jonathan Grant skillfully guides the reader through his journey. The story is told with wit and wisdom. Mr. Grant is a gifted writer and has crafted a fantastic novel. I highly recommend reading Brambleman.I received this book free of charge through LibraryThing and I give this review of my own free will.
Katyas on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Book Info: Genre: Literary Fiction Reading Level: Adult Disclosure: I received a free ebook copy of this novel from the author through the LibraryThing Member Giveaway program in exchange for an honest review. I later received an offer for it through NetGalley, which I accepted.Synopsis: Down-and-out Atlanta writer Charlie Sherman has no idea what madness awaits him when a mysterious stranger convinces him to finish a dead man's book about a horrific crime that's gone unpunished for decades. What Charlie inherits is an unwieldy manuscript about the mob-driven expulsion of more than 1,000 blacks from Forsyth County, Georgia in 1912. During the course of his work, Charlie uncovers a terrible secret involving a Forsyth County land grab. Due to its proximity to Atlanta, the stolen farm is now worth $20 million-and a sale is pending. When he finds the land's rightful owner, Charlie becomes convinced he's been chosen by a Higher Power to wreak justice and vengeance on those who profit from evil. And then things go horribly wrong. Historical Background: Forsyth County, famous as the birthplace of Hee-Haw's Junior Samples, has existed as an intentionally all-white community bordering the black Mecca of Atlanta since 1912, following one of the 20th century's most violent, racist outrages ¿ including lynching, nightriding, and arson. In 1987, the sleepy community gained notoriety when a small march, led by civil rights firebrand Hosea Williams, was broken up by rock- and bottle-throwing Klansmen, neo-Nazis, and their sympathizers. Bloody but unbowed, Williams returned the next week with 25,000 followers in one of largest civil-rights marches in history. There was talk of reparations. Oprah came. Protests and counter-protests yielded a landmark Supreme Court case on free speech. But most importantly, white people flocked to Forsyth. It became the fastest- growing county in the nation, the richest one in Georgia, and one of the twenty wealthiest in the U.S. My Thoughts: I was particularly interested in reading this book since all this happened to close to where I live (within about an hour¿s drive if the traffic cooperates). While it took place well before I ever arrived on the scene, the attitude of the people around here is very similar, I¿m guessing.I was surprised by the amount of humor put into this book. While it is focused on issues of discrimination and the consequences thereof, as well as the various travails through which Charlie Sherman must pass, it also pokes sly fun at both the conservative and liberal ideals, in a way. Charlie¿s thoughts, for instance, about how jumping off a highway overpass is the most ¿socially irresponsible¿ way to commit suicide made me laugh. Other comments that amused me included ¿courthouse arson is a proud Forsyth county tradition,¿ and one about home ownership being a sure sign of uppitiness in the eyes of the racist members of the community. Then, as a result of all non-whites being driven out of Forsyth County in 1912, it is stated: By 1913, the true nature and scope of Forsyth¿s tragedy had become brutally clear. White women, some of them from the finest families, were forced to do their own cooking and cleaning. Bet they never thought about that result! But seriously, the one thing that Grant does not poke fun at is the deadly serious nature of the brutal racism that swept through this area at that time. The descriptions and explanations are sometimes quite brutal, and those with a sensitive nature might want to think strongly about this before they read this book, but enough humor is interspersed into it to keep it bearable.One thing that confused me is a comment about the trip between Gainseville and Atlanta being 53 miles of mountain roads... there is no mountain between Gainseville and Atlanta, so I¿m not sure how there could be mountain roads. Perhaps the author meant country roads. Today, the trip between Gainesville and Atlanta is a fairly straight shot, but I can see where the roads pr
lizamichelle1 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Another excellent story by Mr. Grant. It took me a while to get through it but it was worth it.The cast of characters were vast. It was two books in one, which is what it is. By the time Charlie starts the second book, you almost forget there was a first. But it all worked itself out in the end, good or bad, for some. I know this is probably a bad review but this book was an excellent read. I might have finished it sooner if I had an actual eReader instead of my phone lol.
Crazy_Bunny_Lady on LibraryThing 10 months ago
It was a great read. It had alot of twist & turns that really kept me going. Thanks for the great read!
awolfe on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Excellent well written novel about a man who gets more than he ever wanted. Be careful what you wish/pray for as in our story about a writer who is thrown out of his home by his wife and only goes down hill from there.The book was long, but it never hit any lulls or side trips and stayed on task. It is a story within a story in that it was part the story of Civil Rights, and just trying to get the truth out. I was put off at times by the supernatural segue but it added to the over all plot.
Krista23 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
This author really puts his main character through a lot in this story. Those are really the best type fo reads, you really don't know how they are going to make it out ok. Charlie is down on his luck being called a failure in life by his wife and kicked out of the house. A man by the name of Trouble-literally, offers him a deal that sounds too good to be true, finish a book that was left unfinished by a professor. As Charlie delves deeper into the events that occurred in the book, he focuses on a family farm and historical events that have a not so good past including slavery, civil rights and the especially interesting fact that the story seems to hit a little close to home when he finds a connection to his wife's family. I think this is a book that fans of John Grisham and Michael Connelly would enjoy. The mix of a flawed main character that not only has to work his way through his own problems but also a mystery and putting himself in danger, as well as deeper look into the darker side of America's history.There is a great mixture of characters and the unraveling of the plot was perfect. It has some uplifiting points unveiled through all the darker events that Charlie must find his way through.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really well written.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really good book. Wasn't to sure about it but was very surprised.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is really good, I still have 20 pages til the end, but I highly recommend it. It deals with a guy that has married into a very racist inbred family and he exposes all their dirty secrets while screwing his own life up at the same time. I don't want to say too much so that's all you'll get. This is one of the best books I've read in a while, it is very entertaining and moves quickly. I haven't been able to put it down. There are a lot of different characters so it can be hard to keep track of who's who, but it's interesting how everyone ties into the story. Definitely never a dull moment.