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AWARD WINNER:Carolyn's Noble Award for 2013 (sponsored by MyShelf.com Back To Literature column)
GENREInspirational fiction + historical adventure + science fiction:)
Rich’s remarkable novel is a valiant, vivid, at times brilliant attempt to solve
the puzzle of the human animal. Consisting of gripping, interconnected
narratives of the many lives of Pip Lipkin, the novel retells, in a most
original way, the myth of Original Sin and the possibility of redemption. We
humans have a broad streak of greed, malice, and willful destruction within us.
“Humanity is a toddler” we are told, and our two dominant words are NO! and
Mine! Nietzsche recognized this and called it the Will to Power, present in all
life forms, all of us striving to grow by devouring the Other—only in the case
of human beings, the Other is planet Earth. The lesson of the
novel/primer/metaphor/parable is that we alone, among the interconnected species
that make up the living surface of this ball of energy that is Earth, are
capable of recognizing the final and horrific result of No! and Mine! We alone
can curb our primitive impulses and learn to love unselfishly. Unlike Nietzsche,
Bob is an optimist. He shouts a warning: We must and can act to halt the
destruction of our Earth. Pip/Bob is a very old soul who has learned to heal
with love, to build rather than devour. But what to do about the exploitative
and destructive youngsters, “toddler souls” like Bob’s Vikings, his English in
Ireland and Australia, his Mr. McQuade, our own entrepreneurs? Teach love. Give,
not Gimme. Bravo, Bob! May you draw many readers, and may they join the healing
MORE ABOUT THE REVIEWER
A native of
Alamogordo, New Mexico, Florence Byham Weinberg traveled extensively with her
military family during World War II. Travels continued after marriage to
scholar-critic Kurt Weinberg in Canada, France, Spain, and Germany. After earning
her PhD, she taught for twenty-two years at St. John Fisher College, Rochester,
New York, and ten at Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas. She is the author
of "Anselm: a metamorphosis"
The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.