DR. MEL'S MESSAGE - From my novels to my other projects, no telling what you will read. This is the only place you will get to read about how I developed a screenplay into a novel and what is the driving force. I will talk about many things from films to books to acting to producing. It really will depend on where my mind takes me. I hope you will join me on this journey.
War overseas, war at home. Burning of draft cards, freedom riders, church bombings. Students shot down in the street by their own military. Soldiers spat on and called 'baby-killers' by those they had sworn to protect. Civilians bombing the government, the government bombing the press. Anti-war protests, civil-rights marches. The military-industrial complex pitted against political leaders. The FBI tracking movie stars, rock stars and upstarts. The President evacuated from the capital under siege. When all the rules are challenged will any rules survive? This is America in 1970. Is it time to ‘tune in, turn on and drop out’ or is it ‘burn, baby, burn!’ Should you chant ‘America, love it or leave it’ or let your freak flag fly? Follow Abby, Stan, Bonita, Perry, Buck and others as they navigate a society gone haywire and struggle to find love and truth in a world torn by chaos. In times of great change, nothing is black or white.
This novel tells the story of a ragtag group of budding social activists who form a loosely organized alliance and grapple with social unrest in the US during the early 1970s, when the Vietnam War was still raging. The author deftly captures the tone of the time, creating an environment shaped by unrest and upheaval. He tempers that discord with the optimism, friendship, and the idealistic yearning for a better future displayed by the story's cast of characters. I especially enjoyed how the author weaves the lyrics from the music of the period into the narrative. (Do you remember "Almost Cut My Hair" by Crosby, Still, Nash and Young?) If you grew up during this era, you'll recognize and have a nostalgic appreciation for many of the authentic cultural details that the author includes in the story. But even if you are too young to have lived through this era, you'll find that it resonates with the nation's current social and civil upheavals in a timeless sort of way.
Reviewed in the United States on February 14, 2021
Different from the romanticized perspective of the 1960's expressed in blockbuster movies, this novel helped me to understand a little better the intertwining between some of the important facts and the culture of that period. The characters and their struggle to find meaning in life in times of great stress presents a surprising parallel with the challenges we experience nowadays in terms of social equity. Born in the mid 1970's I was familiar with most of the music referenced in this book. I really enjoyed reading and listening to those songs in a way that put things in more context. Nice work!
The average book should get 3 stars. I don’t like to give out 5 stars except once every year or two. This one made me give it all five stars. I’m not sure what to compare it to. It has deep characters and rich story lines. It’s well-written and really took me places. I grew particularly fond of Buck. The damn thing had me misty eyed a couple of times. I came to have a clearer picture of what things were like in those days. I think I have a better understanding of my grandfather’s generation. Mad respect for the vets as well as all those who demonstrated peacefully against the war. Read it. Peace!
Reviewed in the United States on February 21, 2021
B Van Brenk All The King’s Horses is the best historical fiction I have had the pleasure to read. The nostalgic journey that the author took me on was deeply warming, though It took me to an era that was unsettling, frightening and broken. I could almost hear the old familiar song lyrics he wrote about and I could feel the heartache of the characters we were introduced to. In the middle of crisis and upheaval it is too easy to forget the importance of strong, supportive and loving relationships. The author introduced us to characters that found each other, developing just such relationships at a time when our country desperately needed connectivity, hope and peace - not unlike our present world! Being a father of an army vet who came back from Iraq damaged in many ways, I appreciated how much respect the author showed for those who have served our country...I ached, yet again, for the lack of respect from so many others. This is expertly crafted story telling that I would recommend for anyone who needs to remember or would like to be introduced to that chaotic late 1960’s and early 70’s in America and be reminded that our greatest strengths can be found in each of us, when we do life together. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Very poignant to today. History repeats itself (many times over). I was growing up during the Vietnam war times, but was too young to remember the details or be cognizant of the importance of the events. I now better understand and I feel a bit more empathetic to those fighting in these non-sensicle wars. Well done, cuz!!!!
The author, Stephen H. Goewey, currently resides in the Seattle, Washington area where he enjoys the great outdoors of the Northwest and can be found from time to time playing saxophone in various taverns.