Author: Buell Hollister
Author’s Website: buellhollister.com
Reviewer’s name: J.B. Maynard
Reviewer’s Rating: 4 out of 5
Amazon Link to Book
Leeram in Fordlandia is published through Merrimack Media.
Reviewed by J.B. Maynard originally for Truth About Books
Gilbert Greenbush acquires a shrunken head in an estate cleanout. That’s when his life really begins. Leeram, the shrunken head in question, is ancient tribesman who can communicate with his newfound trustee from beyond the grave through the use of this creepy object. What seems like a good-luck charm and companion at first, turns into a spirit guide and trusted friend that sweeps Gilbert up in an adventure to the Amazon and beyond! Do you know what PETA means? Do you know what an Atlatl is and how to use one? After you’ve cracked open this wacked out tale, you’ll never be able to say “no” again.
Leeram in Forlandia is a rare gem by Buell Hollister. It’s uncommon to get ahold of such a wacky, romantic comedy with this much real historical influence. I found myself laughing my @#! off at the witty banter between Gilbert and Leeram on a regular basis.
Ever new character was funnier and more interesting than the last. People Like: Suxie Redbone, A larger-than-life amazon in charge of the river cleanup operation; or Lisa LePage, an ex PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) member and a very supportive and likeable love interest throughout the story; or even Pericles Xerxes Pangloss… um need I say more?
Leeram in Fordlandia is packed with comedy and historical facts like Henry Ford’s involvement in the automotive industry and the creation of the fictitious Fordlandia, and how to use an Atlatl. Let me explain: an Atlatl is a primitive propulsion device for a spear. You hold the shorter stick with a cupped end in your hand along with the spear. The back end of the spear goes into the cup so that when you throw the spear or javelin the Atlatl acts as an extension of your arm. Anyways, I immediately YouTubed it and you should too… looks like fun.
Now back to the review. Once the Greenbush was on the water, Buell showed an aptitude for boating and nautical terminology that made the ride feel realistic and gut wrenching, but I knew I was in good hands! On another side note: I actually would love to see this book in graphic novel form someday. It lends itself well to illustration.
Eventually, Buell takes into the spirit world. This book takes a very unique look at the afterlife by suggesting that wormholes are the gateways between life and death, and by detailing certain objects that spirits can communicate through; such as a shrunken head, radio, or a dolphin.
This book jumps through scenes at a fevered pace. While this allowed Buell’s tale to cover more ground, it felt nauseating at times and it detracted from the value of certain scenes. On the other hand, some scenes were completely unnecessary and felt shoe-horned in just to fit in more background than was needed. These fumbles took a little away from the entertainment value at times, but they didn’t stop me from devouring this book.
I do hope this book becomes a movie or series someday. I feel that Leeram in Fordlandia is definitely set up that way. I can’t tell you who this book is mainly geared towards because I think that nearly anyone would get a kick out of it; not only that, but I think they’d learn something in the process. Thank you, Buell, for a read that felt a lot like a vacation.
He has been a newspaper journalist, contributing writer for several boating and general interest periodicals, free-lance editor, short story writer, and sometimes poet. He is a former Boston Correspondent for the National Fisherman. He spent fifteen years with the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, first in their underutilized species promotion program, then helping to develop commercial fishing gear that reduced bycatch (juvenile fish and untargeted species). He created the Massachusetts Clean Vessel Act program to improve coastal water quality. His plan was used by other states and is now the national standard. He is the past President of the St. Botolph Club in Boston, a club centered around the arts.
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