Once again, a heartfelt thank you to everyone who purchased one of my books and took the time to write a review. Each new review helps Amazon promote and recommend a book = more profits going to help get dogs like Edie (below in photo) out of kill shelters.
Edie, 10 year old poodle, rescued with funds from purchases of my books. Edie is very thankful.
TO LIVE OUT LOUD:
The backdrop of Paulette Mahurin’s gripping new novel, “To Live Out Loud,” is late 19th century France but the dark premise of political expediency taking precedence over justice and accountability could just as easily be juxtaposed against the corruption of contemporary Washington D.C.
Likewise, the anti-Semitic sentiment which convicted Alfred Dreyfus on false charges of treason is little different from the escalating mantra in modern times that if you’re (fill in the blank), then you automatically must be (fill in the blank). As anyone who has ever tried in the context of an intellectual dialogue to challenge the myopia of this mindset, there is risk of becoming a social pariah and, accordingly, unfriended on Facebook.
In the time of writer Emile Zola, a key player in the Dreyfus tableau, the choice to champion an imprisoned Jew carried even more dire consequences. Not the least of this was incurring the wrath of the French government for suggesting that a grievous mistake had not only been made but was also made on purpose. As Zola – coupled with Dreyfus’ wife and brother – works tirelessly to prove the prisoner’s innocence in order to facilitate his release, disturbing evidence threatens to derail their plans. From the viewpoint of the government, to admit wrongdoing during the Dreyfus trial proceedings might cause the populace to start wondering just how many other things were being lied about. And goodness knows, we can’t have that, can we? In a nutshell, it’s job security to steadfastly stick to the fabricated story.
As in her previous work, Mahurin does not shy from intensive research and clearly establishes herself as an accomplished history detective in stitching together all that is known about the Dreyfus case. The conversations that transpire are so plausible in scope and cadence that we, the readers, almost feel as if we are eavesdropping in a Paris café. Her character development is thoughtful and multi-layered and we come away with a deeper understanding and respect for a man who felt compelled to take up a cause no matter the ripple effect that might damage – or destroy – his own standing in the community.
Each chapter begins with a Zola quote, my favorite of which was “If you shut up truth and bury it under the ground, it will but grow, and gather to itself such explosive power that the day it bursts through it will blow up everything in its way.”
Wise words to ponder in what promises to be an ugly upcoming presidential election in which voters must attempt to discern whether the lips that are moving are not only issuing substance but are also speaking the truth.
on October 19, 2015
I’m a futurist by nature, and so reading sci-fi and fantasy and anything to do with the near and far future occupies the bulk of my leisure time. But every once in a while a writer comes along to connect me to the past in such a way that it’s every bit as much fun to time travel back in time. This is one of those authors and one of those books. I found Emila Zola, as a fellow writer and artist, upon whose life To Live Out Loud is based, quite the kindred spirit. He is if anything a bolder soul, braver, more uncompromising, and a hero not just in his writing but in real life, but it is impossible for any artist not to feel a strong affinity for him. He risks all in this story to champion the injustice done to a Jewish military officer in a time in France when the largely catholic population demonized Jews. His tireless investigations and pursuit of the truth amidst lies, shams, public deceits, all enacted on the part of the government and the military, wielding all their tools of oppression against one solitary individual, serve to inspire us all that hope is never lost even when facing such a corrupt and all-powerful foe. This tale, as timely today as it was in the late 1800s in which the story is set, should serve to inspire the reader to live a more activist lifestyle and to champion their own causes, fighting injustice wherever they may find it. The premise of this fact-based story on its own is quite moving, but the writing is every bit up to the task of conveying such a tale, strong, confident, lean and journalistic, itself an homage to Zola’s own career as a journalist.
on October 15, 2015
What a fascinating tapestry of fact and fiction! To Live Out Loud is a well-researched, well-written, historical account of novelist Emile Zola’s attempt to shine the light of justice on the case history now knows as the Dreyfus Affair. The story concerns a man named Alfred Dreyfus who was a Jewish officer serving in the French Military who had been convicted of providing secret intelligence to Germany. Zola, an intellectual of the Victorian era, writes a newspaper article where he declares Dreyfus an innocent man and it draws attention to the injustice in play. It held me from start to finish and left me wanting to know more about Emile Zola. I also appreciate profits from Ms Mahurin’s books go to help rescue dogs. Brilliant work and well worth the read. I recommend.
on October 12, 2015
5 Star. Highly recommended.
A powerful and well researched novel. Great writing.
I loved the title and its significance. To Live Out Loud, brilliantly illustrates in a few words the life triumphs and struggles of the protagonist.
I highly recommend this historical novel by Paulette Mahurin.
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HIS NAME WAS BEN
on September 16, 2015
Most people have been touched by the dreaded word “cancer” in one way or another. This is a beautiful love story (not sappy romance) about two broken people piecing their lives together while they deal with cancer. Some of it is all too real for me having watched two family members die of the disease. Ben and Sara have to overcome the obstacles of the disease while trying to bring closure to events from their childhood. They learn to lean on and trust each other, healing their souls in the process. In the end, they learn what love really means. It’s a book worth reading.
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THE PERSECUTION OF MILDRED DUNLAP
on February 18, 2015
Expertly written story of life in a small town in the early 1900’s. The unusual characters win our empathy, and allow us to see how small minds can be the ruin of other people’s lives. Be ready for some mind stretching revelations. Highly recommended!
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