"From barren rocks ... to living stones" is a concise and incident packed memoir that covers an eighteen month period in the teenage life of the author in the nineteen sixties. It is seen originally from a young person's perspective; and, as the writer matures and shares his experiences, in turn the reader gains from his reflections on the people and the places, beginning in Colonial era Aden, where he has lived, observed, and remembered. Conversational in style, it is very personal which brings something of an intimacy into the story being revealed. The book is a meditative postscript to the twentieth century bringing some valid and perceptive insights. Pursuing through the events of the time, we begin to see a life that will swing from the sadness to the times of joy, times of humour and times of thoughtfulness, times of tragedy and times of tenderness. We can see the issues as one faces the dual challenges of a western youth culture in the context of a home in the Middle East. Like wise there are the aspects of seeing the contrast of an Islamic and Christian culture side by side. However, the deep concerns of the middle eastern terrorism of the nineteen sixties also brings a topical aspect into the process of learning from the events as we begin the twenty first century with strong concerns about the dangers of living with the threat of terrorism. This is the true story of one person's journey in life that brings lessons for so many in their own journey of life.
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From Barren Rocks...To Living Stones based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
From Barren Rocks . . . to Living Stones By Jon Magee Author Jon Magee writes a personal journey describing ‘Life’s Rich Tapestry’ not only of the diverse places he traveled to and lived, but in the ‘richness’ of the various blends of the people he meets along the way. This narrative teems with events, good and bad, as he covers the history and politics of the times; beginning in the UK, so very different from the hot sands and humidity of Aden and Africa. Growing up in strange places, nothing like his homeland, enduring both wonderful and harsh experiences, mold the boy into a man of intelligence, empathy and compassion toward people of all lands. His story begins in the 60's, an exciting time to be a teenager, with new music and singers forging a legacy never forgotten. Thrilling movies like the James Bond series and the unlikely rise of the Beatles mean little to the people of Aden who cannot grasp the concepts of more than their barren lands. Yet Aden has its own history, often hard and violent, but no less interesting. Oddly the song, ‘The Barren Rocks of Aden’ was immortalized by the bagpipe playing of Scottish Highlanders. In 1968 the Aden Protectorate is given its independence and all British troops are withdrawn, however plans changed and total independence was brought forward to November, 1967 with the troops leaving at the same time. Despite that, the age of terrorism had just begun to spread its evil tentacles throughout the Arab nations and eventually the world at large. Jon, still a teenager, is destined to observe all its horrors; which he preferred not to know about or remember. But with his father in the military, Jon has to go where his dad is sent and make the best of it. After getting required documentation, he goes off to Kenya with a party of men from his church, looking forward to exciting new adventures . . . But it is not what he imagined. Many more adventures and life lessons are embraced as author Jon Magee narrates his life from boyhood to manhood, experiencing the best and worst of mankind. His travels all over the world eventually lead him from ‘Barren Rocks . . . to Living Stones. This book is recommended for history lovers and readers interested in real life experiences leading to ‘the coming-of-age’ and the making of a man connected to the world and its people through his own experiences. The ending to this special story is a surprise — and yet on the other hand, perhaps not. Micki Peluso: writer, journalist, and author of . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang
From Barren Rocks...to Living Stones was so well written that I did not want it to end! This memoir is such a wonderful and personal way to learn history! I really could not put it down and I don't usually read history books of any kind. It was not written in the first person, rather Jon refers to himself as the character "Jon" in story form, which makes for me the book all the more readable and entertaining. This book truly expanded my global awareness! I was a teen during the 60s as was author Jon Magee and am thankful to have his account of life at that time in the Middle East from a Westerner's point of view. Also, anyone who has moved about as a child would identify with his journey and struggles adapting to new environments and learn from the wealth of lessons he shares on his journey. Definitely going to give this one 5 stars and recommend it highly!