Thursday, February 07, 2013
The Alabama Rebel by R. Thomas Roe - Blog Tour and Book Review
About the Book:
This historically based novel is a window into Alabama both before, during and after the Civil War. River Hunter is the son of a Cherokee mother and a Scotch-Irish father who has a unique perspective on a society that undergoes a radical shift forced on it by the War. River's father is presumed dead after disappearing on a trapping trip into the mountains of the Carolinas, so, River's mother gathers her children and they move to the cotton belt of Alabama to avoid being shipped west by President Jackson during the Removal time for Native Americans. River rapidly adapts to the new life and has an insatiable appetite for knowledge, reading books at every opportunity. In time he obtains a formal education at recognized academies and universities. Following his heroic service in the Confederate Army during the Civil War and schooling at one of the nation's most prestigious law schools, River becomes an attorney. He is then betrothed to a beautiful young woman who has inherited a substantial plantation upon the death of her husband in the War. Many problems plague the young couple from the forces existing in the South after the War to the prejudicial attitudes of River's inlaws to the polarized politics between the newly freed Slaves and their former owners. This fascinating novel exams all sides within the context of a very unique segment of American history.
About the Author:
I am a retired USAF military pilot having served with the Air Force for twenty-six years followed by retirement as a full Colonel. I also practiced as a trial lawyer in the field of Aviation Accident Litigation. I have been writing for a number of years and have had five novels published. My fifth novel is titled "The Alabama Rebel" and takes place in the years before during and after the Civil War. Much of the source material for this novel was from my own family history and congressional records which were subsequently published in thirteen volumes. I graduated from St. Thomas University and William Mitchell College of Law, both in St.Paul, Minnesota. I presently live in Florida along the Atlantic Ocean and also in Colorado in the mountains of the southwest. I spend most of my time reading and writing novels. I limit my social activities to military groups I served with and stay involved with my USAF Pilot Class. Life has been good and I have no regrets.
I was so excited by the synopsis of this book. It was ripe with possibilities. Sadly, at least to me, it lived up to none of them. For the second time in my reviewing life I failed to finish a book. I make it a point to read the books I choose to review; I feel I owe it to the publicists. But I also feel that when I get a book that I simply CANNOT read I owe it to myself to stop. I write honest reviews. They are MY opinions and I try and explain why I don't like a book when I don't. With this one it was both character and writing.
The hero, River was perfect. And implausible. And anachronistic. What half Indian, half Scottish boy in a pre-Civil War world world would keep answering with, "whatever"? As to his character development - now granted I only read about a quarter of the book but he did not change even though several major things happened within the pages that I read. Same, easy going, perfect lad no matter what. Well read, polite, eager to learn which is fine but there was NO drama. None.
The writing - all short, declarative sentences. This gets old fast. You feel like you are being lectured to. There is a place for them, but not the entirety of the (at least what I read) story.
So I stopped reading. I couldn't take the writing. I couldn't take the implausibilities. I read a lot. I don't want to read something I really don't like. It doesn't happen often but this book stopped me.
You can see The Alabama Rebel Tour Schedule
You can purchase The Alabama Rebel on Amazon.com
Disclosure: I was sent a free copy of The Alabama Rebel for my honest review by JKS Communications. I received no compensation for this post