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Archive for February, 2017

Book: Ordeal of the Mountain Man by William W. Johnstone – February 21st, 2017

by on Feb.21, 2017, under Books

Ordeal of the Mountain Man (Mountain Man, #17)Ordeal of the Mountain Man by William W. Johnstone
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is one of the better stories of the whole Johnstone Clan corral of books. The writing, though, is very good at times, then weak and then horrible. i wonder how many hands were in writing this book.

Basically this book is a variation of many of the previous Smoke Jensen novels combined into one. This one combining herding cattle, kidnapping, taking over a town indians, etc. All of which is a retread of the other books with the same results – and i don’t mean just gunfighting. The town banker, the indian interaction, the reasons for robbery, herding cattle were all too familiar to me as i read the Jensen series in order. Much has been repeated before, but this time it is all too much of the same.

Another problem i had was marked inconsistency in this part of the series. This one specifically stumbles involving the weird way the Johnstone Clan has handled Jensen’s children, adopted children and children mentioned that seem to be lost forever.

The vast array of characters are, as always, well done. The settings are lacking in this one. Especially odd as so much territory is covered.

Of course, the repetition is to me and not readers who have not taken in about 75 of the Johnstone books. It is a good story with it’s troubles but…

Bottom line: I recommend this book: 6 out of 10 points.

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Death of Al Jarreau – February 12th, 2017

by on Feb.12, 2017, under Sketchbook

Besides my love of the music of Sinatra, Dean, Sam, Steve & Eydie and that genre, i do have a bit of contemporary music I love, too. One of those is the music of Al Jarreau. I always loved the scat of Fitzgerald and Torme and Jarreau was a new dimension. It was late in high school while working the caricature thing that i first heard ‘Roof Garden’. I remember buying his ‘Breaking Away’, one of the very few contemporary albums I’ve ever bought, at the Interstate Mall in Altamonte Springs, Florida. I’d had trouble finding it anywhere.
Along with purchasing his albums, I also attended many of his live performances. The first i attended also happened to be one of the first events at the newly opened Orange County Convention Center back around 1983. I still have a Jarreau shirt from one of his live concerts in the ’80s I attended.
About ten years ago Jarreau was the headliner of the annual Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts and Humanities in Eatonville, Florida. It was there that i sketched during the event and was fortunate that Jarreau signed it. It was the last i saw him in a concert.
He was a show all to himself. His movement and his whole soul was the music as much as what his vocal cords would provide. I recall he would perform at least one piece with no plugged in gadgets at all. The a cappella performance really showcased so much of the entertainer he was.






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