Wallace Street

 

Wallace Street, is a mystery novel in e-book format by Tess Devlin.

The story line follows the lives of a large number of the poor inhabitants of a severely depressed neighborhood in 1950’s Chicago. A few are fortunate enough to have jobs. Some are too uninterested to try to obtain them. Several are alcoholics, the wives often are abused and the children are plentiful. They proceed through their daily lives in a mostly uninteresting mundane fashion except for a couple of gossip worthy residents and a bright spot weekly Bingo game for the ladies and penny poker for the men. Their routine existence suddenly is shattered when one of the children is savagely murdered and the community comes together to attempt to aid one another to cope. A large cast of characters is involved, each with his/her individual problem described in some detail and the reader easily is brought to the realization that the community and many of its members will never again be the same. The tale’s finalé is quite interesting and, unless you read a lot of mysteries and note the lightly emphasized descriptions, probably quite unexpected.

Discussion: The mechanics of design basically are well done with often an entire chapter devoted to describing a family, their interrelationships and individual/collective problems. The police aggressive activity with respect to interrogation is modified but appropriate to the era as is their sloppy case handling. Similarly well done are the depiction of a cop dedicated to his beat and the individuals within, his ability to overlook minor infractions and the uneasy relationship that he develops and maintains with the area’s hoodlums. The one difficulty encountered by this reviewer was the occasional unexpected manner of switching from one to another of the many characters as they pursue some past or present activity and some other minor faults that more meticulous editing could have avoided.

Conclusion: Intriguing human interest story offering many opportunities for further development.

4* Intriguing human interest story immersed in a murder mystery.

FUTURE HEALTH

FUTURE HEALTH ISBN: 9780984390049, Conundrum Publishing, an e-book by Dr. Jay Shetlin.

The book begins with a number of testimonials, a statement of the book’s intent, a disclaimer, a Preface that expands upon the book’s intent, an Introduction of further explanation and a text in five parts – Harrison I through V. (Harrison is the author’s son who survived meningitis only to suffer cerebral palsy but, with faith in God and holistic treatment, advanced gradually to a life of normalcy.) The five parts form loosely a structure upon which the author provides extensive listing of “Techniques for Advanced Living” that cover a multitude of individual factors. It begins with basic anatomy/physiology and expands to touch upon almost every conceivable aspect of the thoughts and actions that accompany and/or are part of the process of life and living. Each section is provided with a summary of the important material covered.

Discussion: The author has suggested a procedure of mental and physical action that can be of immense help to any individual and has done so in way that may easily be understood by any reader. In doing so, as a practitioner of Chiropractic, he has set forth a strong case for the practice and for adoption of a holistic approach to health, its attainment and maintenance. The discussion is most timely because of the final realization of the horrendous situation that has developed with overmedication and with the growing knowledge of the importance of, and increased need for, adoption of a more holistic type of medical treatment. A caveat must be suggested, however. From this reviewer’s understanding, a little clarification of the discussion of sleep and the importance of the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) cycle of sleep would appear to be helpful. As stated, it is “… the 5th level…” but it is NOT the “…deepest stage of sleep” and therefore the most helpful. Sleep’s five stages are – I and II those of ‘falling to sleep’, III and IV – the deepest and most beneficial, V (REM) is the last, often accompanied by dreams, and is just before awakening. The first episode of REM does first occur 70-90 minutes after falling asleep and then, as other cycles occur, REM repeats at, give/take 100 minute periods. Each REM cycle becomes longer as the night progresses and the deep sleep cycles decrease. Also it is this reader’s understanding that the Windsor study was conducted not by one preparing to graduate but by a graduate M.D. under aegis of Univ. Penn. Med. Sch. It is correctly cited as giving much credence to Chiropractic practice. Amusingly, different reports list different numbers of cadavers, 50 – 100 humans, 22 – 25 cats. One other somewhat less compelling feature of the presentation is that a sizeable number of references that are included for each chapter’s discussions are opinions rather than offering statistical support for the referenced item. However, the author does provide an excellent case supporting the burgeoning opposition to mandatory vaccination.

Summary: A most interesting discussion of myriad facets of life and living for the layman. No doubt it provides an excellent lecture. As a written presentation, however, judicious editing would have removed much of the repetition to give a more concise presentation and a little more attention to detail would have greatly increased the value of this otherwise thoughtful discussion.

3*        5* material provided, but flawed presentation.