I’ll be away from blogging for a while. Not that I blog that much but I enjoy visiting sites and keeping in touch. Going to take care of a well needed situation. So if you don’t see me hanging around your site, I haven’t stopped paying attention. I just may not be able to get to a computer and don’t have a smart phone. The only thing smart in this household is our dogs.
And speaking of dogs look who has made it out of a kill shelter and gone home sweet home this week. Oh happy dance!
All profits from my books go to help get these dogs out of kill shelters. Thank you to everyone who bought a book and took the time to write a review. We’re all grateful for the support.
Where to purchase my books:
THE PERSECUTION OF MILDRED DUNLAP:
TO LIVE OUT LOUD:
HIS NAME WAS BEN:
Some recent reviews:
In To Live Out Loud, award-winning author Mahruin gives us a stunning portrayal of the personal, emotional and struggle of Emile Zola leading up to and during his journalistic support of Alfred Dreyfus, which ended with his agonizing temporary exile from his beloved France. Through the eyes of a close friend and confidant, Charles Mandonette, we are gifted with not only a reminder of the journalistic morality of France’s most recognized journalist, but also the most amazing relationship between these two men. Though the novel retells well known events of Zolas emotional defense of Alfred Dreyfus, Mahurin skillfully builds drama, transforming what could have been a simple retelling of history into a page-turner, filled with love, loss, and a very tangible humanity. My heart went out to Mandonette as he watched the inevitable downfall of the m
The story was well written and was rather captivating. Not only did Paulette tell the story in a very intriguing way, but she also teaches the reader about a historical event that not everybody knows all the details of, I sure didn’t.
‘To Live Out Loud’ was a nice combination of fiction and fact to makes a great story. I really enjoyed this book and I highly recommend Paulette’s work.
an he admits to loving to the exclusion of all others. The novel is especially relevant in our times when it seems journalism has lost some of its truth. Excellent job. Now I’m off to get Mahurin’s award-winning historical, The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap.
Stories about social justice deserve to be heard, especially when based on truth. ‘To Live Out Loud’ is no exception. In 1895 Alfred Dreyfus a young Jewish artillery officer was falsely accused of treason and court martialled in France and condemned to a life sentence on Devil’s Island in French Guiana. The trial and retrial, characterised by anti-Semitism, and political and military cover-up and deception, deeply divided French society and attracted international outrage. A French journalist, Émile Zola fought for Dreyfus’ liberty by penning J’Accuse, which named the officers responsible for the conspiracy. Paulette Mahurin reveals the heroic courage of Zola, who in his selfless bid to uncover the truth and free Dreyfus, exposes himself to libel, abuse and physical danger. The author tells Zola’s story through the eyes of an older fictionalised friend who has known him since he was a young boy, helping readers to fully understand and appreciate Zola.
I loved the quotes from Zola heading the chapters which revealed his talent and insight with lines such as ‘how fragile the ethics of civilised conduct are when involved in self-preservation’ and ‘respectable people … What bastards’.
This short but powerful story is told simply but with overwhelming humanity and deep empathy. You can’t help but feel for the characters’ plights and feel the outrage of injustice. Everyone should hear stories like this a
The short novel is full of solid dialogue and tension. Which made To Live Out Loud as entertaining as it was informative. As much as I love a fun read, the depth of this subject and the importance of this historical event left me feeling as though I needed to read this book. I’m glad I did. It get a full five stars from me. And I recommend it wholly.
“To Live Out Loud” is a masterfully written work of fiction that is based upon documented historical fact. Author Paulette Mahurin gives us a stunning portrayal of Emile Zola, a French journalist in the late 1800’s, who bravely stood up and came to the defense of Alfred Dreyfus, a young Jewish artillery officer, who was unjustly convicted of passing French military secrets to Germany.
This crucial case in French history divided the masses and resulted in vast changes in the criminal justice system. Zola voiced what he believed was right in spite of knowing he battled powerful military, political, and religious leaders. Zola heroically attempted to uncover the truth and free Dreyfus in spite of being exposed to libel, abuse, and physical danger. He selflessly came to the defense of another when there was nothing in it for himself except peril.
Ms. Mahurin successfully portrays the very best of humanity juxtaposed with the worst, for while she reveals Zola’s noble character she paints the ugly landscape of anti-Semitism, political and military cover-up, and deception.
I believe this is a must read for everyone. Bravo! A five star classic.
No, this is not a quotation from Paulette Mahurin’s novel ‘To Live Out Loud’ which recounts what happened in the French capital when an article was published in ‘L’Aurore’ newspaper accusing the government of a miscarriage of justice involving a Jewish army officer. Those events took place over one hundred years previously, at the end of the 19th century. The events recounted in the first sentence were witnessed live on television in January this year (2015) prompting an upsurge of global solidarity for the victims with a slogan taken from the name of the newspaper (Charlie Hebdo): ‘I am Charlie’.
Author Paulette Mahurin wrote ‘To Live Out Loud’ as a fictionalised account of those historical facts that shook France in the 1890s. The bare, dismal bones of the ‘Dreyfus Affair’ can be recounted in a couple of sentences. In 1898 famous author Emile Zola took up the cause of Alfred Dreyfus, who in 1894 was unjustly convicted of spying, humiliated in a public ceremony and banished to life imprisonment on Devil’s Island. For the next twelve years, by which time Zola would be dead, the controversial judgement was hotly debated, and France was bitterly divided between the ‘Dreyfusards’- mainly anti-clerical, pro-Republican intellectuals, and the ‘anti-Dreyfusards’, supporting the Establishment, the Army and the Catholic church. Underlying this terrible divide was a current of anti-Semitism which resulted in riots, destruction of property, violence and death threats.
Ms Mahurin focuses on the moment when Zola decides to enter the fray, dropping a media bombshell with his front page article and banner headline ‘J’accuse’. And here, in the skilful hands of the author, the bare bones of history are fleshed out to become a living breathing human story in this beautifully written, perfectly paced novel.
Zola is depicted as an ordinary man; a prestigious writer, but no hero, no politician, no orator. He enjoyed a comfortable lifestyle, a solid literary reputation, had a fulfilling family and social life. All this was put at risk when, after considerable inner turmoil, he finally took the decision to stand up and be counted, denouncing the injustice of Dreyfus’ conviction in ringing prose that could not be ignored. The price he paid was heavy. Sham trials, personal suffering, death threats and finally his decision to flee France in order to avoid imprisonment.
Such is the weight of empathy in Ms Mahurin’s account of all this that we are by turns impressed, outraged, and overwhelmed by this story of amazing courage in the face of a judicial and political system which made a mockery of the rule of law. And though Zola is first in the firing line, others too impress by their bravery–his friends and family, the family of Dreyfus, Georges Clemenceau, the editor of ‘l’Aurore’, Colonel Piquart, who produced evidence of Dreyfus’ innocence and in particular the lawyer Labori, who survived an assassination attempt. The research is impeccable; the distillation of the most poignant and telling details into a tense dramatic narrative leaves the reader breathless.
One of the first victims in the Paris attacks of 2015 was journalist Charb. He had long been aware of the risks of publishing a controversial satirical paper. The offices had been firebombed and he was living under police protection. Asked if he wasn’t afraid to continue he replied ‘…it may sound pretentious but I’d rather die on my feet than live on my knees’. In Paulette Mahurin’s novel, the narrator Charles says Zola’s choice was based on the reasoning that ‘one man’s action impacts us all’ and the title is from Zola’s quote ‘If you ask what I came into this life to do, I will tell you: I came to live out loud’.
We read in the introduction that Paulette Mahurin was ‘inspired and deeply moved by those who have endured intolerance and adversity’. Finishing the book, her readers too will be inspired and deeply moved, not only by the story she tells, but by her ability to bring it so dramatically to life at a time when it is still needed. Thank you Paulette–chapeau!
Speaking out for what you believe should not get you silenced. Knowing what is right and fighting for your beliefs sometimes alienates you from the rest. Alfred Dreyfus was wrongly accused of being a traitor to his country. Although the courts, the legal teams and the justice system knew that he was innocent, documents were changed, hidden, sealed and not allowed within the courtroom he was to be tried in order to hide the truth and protect the guilty. To Live Out Loud is the story of how Emile Zola and a fictional character named Charles Mandonette feverishly worked to help free Dreyfus from the confines of a prison cell that was dark, dank, cold and not fit for anyone to live in. To Live Out Loud: To voice you thoughts, to not let anyone suppress your ability to fight what is right. Emile Zola claimed he lived his life in order to speak out and have his voice heard in speech and in his writing. Driven by his own determination to set the record straight he used the power of the press, his own thoughts, put his reputation on line and risked his life in order to prove the corruption, deceit, betrayals and lies that were spoken within the courtroom when Dreyfus’s court martial hearing took place. Beneath the lies and those that hoped to bury the truth the ugly head of anti-Semitism rose. The army, the justices, the juries and the different political groups each with their own agenda protecting one man who was the real traitor. Not concerned for his own welfare, his reputation or his life, Zola went on a crusade with the help of some powerful lawyers and the wife of Alfred Dreyfus to free this innocent man. Many voices are heard within this novel as Emile Zola relates his story, Charles Mandonette our narrator as he follows the trials, the life and the desperation within on man to save a friend. The author’s research is extensive and the way it is presented makes the reader feel that they are there with Charles, Emile and the court itself as the judge suppresses evidence, documents are not allowed and the lawyers for both sides plead their cases but often in some respects to deaf ears.
Colonel Du Paty de Clam and Colonel Henry found evidence of the real traitor a man named Esteryhazy whose court martial was anything but a sham. His lawyers were able to convince the court that he was innocent and each time Dreyfus was unfairly sentenced and accused. With the help of politicians and George Clemenceau who hoped that Zola would be successful in his quest to free Dreyfus and supported J’Accuse, did not realize that there were so many against them and that documents and information would be sealed and concealed. The corruption and deceit ran high within the police department, government and court. Dreyfus was rotting away on Devil’s Island, the wheels of justice took a standstill and when evidence was finally paramount it was discovered that someone from our side offered to sell military secrets. But, it was not Dreyfus. Prejudice reared its ugly head and because he was Jewish and his family lived in the German section of France he was more than just singled out.
Then as Zola was trialed and pronounced guilty he had to escape to England in order to escape imprisonment. He came back to France but he didn’t live enough to see justice being given and Dreyfus exonerated. The public was taken in and the punishment not too harsh. All the information and documents that the Dreyfus family gave to Zola and “what had been learned from liberal political friends involved secret conversations.” Zola even wrote an article in the newspaper and was on trial for libel. By doing that, the facts that were needed to free Dreyfus could now be introduced in court. Zola took a great chance and the end result will astound readers. Nothing was hidden and the cover-up revealed hoping that when Scheurer Kestner handed over a request for the revision of the Dreyfus court martial to the Minister of Justice, things would change and the truth about Esterhazy would come out. But, nothing was left out and the police, the higher ups and the court trampled on the evidence and the author eloquently and brilliantly through Zola and Charles relates the events. On page 57 the author shares Zola’s thoughts and reasoning for making the accusations come to light. Making himself liable to articles 30 and 31 of the July 29th 1881 law on the press making libel a punishable offense. Learn more as you read Lettre Au President De La Republique Par Emile Zola. The corruption ran deep and as you hear Zola’s testify, the wife of Dreyfus disrespected on the stand and the refusal of the court for questions in the Dreyfus matter to be asked, the lawyers fight for control and the power to win. Unfortunately the end result was not what Zola’s lawyer hoped for and as a result when the verdict is read he is forced to leave and go to England until the storm settles down. The French were against him and the words that come out are toxic. When the government changes and those that were in charge are no longer there Zola hopes that Dreyfus will be retried. But, his innocence does not come into play instead he is given a presidential pardon.
Did Dreyfus provide military secrets to Germany? Was he really guilty or was he just a victim of who he was and the fact that he was Jewish? Public opinion turned against him and a man was wrongly accused. Hear the voices of Zola and Mandonette, the judges, the lawyers and finally that of Dreyfus himself as he fights with his every being for JUSTICE.
The trial is well documented as if it came from the original transcript taking readers through the jury selection, witness questioning and the arguments laid out before the judge. The end result is not that much different than today when you realize that someone is being used as a scapegoat. Read Chapter 16 and you too will bring tears to your eyes. Then things changed and although he was in England and the outcry of Anti-Semitism dying down hope was in the air when he received a telegram stating to prepare for great success. With Colonel Henry found dead and his name still hot like a poker he decided to remain where he was. Emile with the guidance of Charles wrote a declaration to be published. Expressing his feelings as he finally did the impossible: Freeing his friend. Imagine the emotions. But, the author provides an unusual twist to the ending that you won’t expect, as some did not want what Zola was able to do. Within chapter 23 learn the fate of Dreyfus and the offer that we had no choice but to accept. The ending is quite emotional and the fate of Dreyfus and whether he finally is exonerated you will have to read for yourself. Just how many lives were sacrificed and just how far will a friend go when deceit, lies and betrayals run the all the way to the top of a country’s government and court. TO LIVE OUT LOUD IS truly better than staying silent. Once again the voice and thoughts of Paulette Muhurin are hear loud and clear in this five star novel so well written and vividly depicting the time period and the times.