Thursday, December 30, 2010

Leaf Reviewed

Yep I actually finished another book! Computer died completely which left me some spare time. Imagine what I could do if I never got on the computer again. But all my friends are on the computer so that would be sad.

On to the book. The Boy Who Would Be a Fire Truck - True-Life Tales From a Working Class Writer by Marty Wombacher. I met Marty online on a website we both frequent. Shortly after I started to read his daily blog, A guy walks into 365 bars, (which is almost finished) his friend Gidget put up a chapter of the book on her blog. Its amazing this circle of interwebs.

I'll admit that one of the things I loved about his description of the start of summer in the 60's was that it reminded me a lot of the movie A Walk on the Moon, which is one of my all time favorites. I loved the chapter and really wanted to read the whole book. And six months later, I now have.

At four years old Marty told his mom he wanted to be a fire truck when he grew up. She told him that people don't grow up to be fire trucks, they grow up to be adults. Marty didn't like the idea of that and decided that he in no way needed to grow up to be an adult. The book is a series of essays from Marty's life. As an online review said "Wombacher's life is unique in the fact that he's had small doses of fame, but he is not famous." Reading the book I actually felt like, wow I've never really had anything exciting happen to me. Not in a dis on my life kinda way, but lets just say Marty and I have had very different lives. And yet there were still things that made me stop and re-read them because they struck a chord with me.

After flying to NY to be interviewed by Jane Pauley on The Today Show he said "That was my first time in New York and while we didn't have time to do much sightseeing, I remember feeling like I fit in. Something I never really felt in Peoria." I could have written that same line after my trip to London. Felt exactly the same way just walking around the city, like I fit in in a way I never had felt before. Sometimes life is less about what's different between us, and more about those things that bond us together into little groups.

The book has great stories of living in New York, being a writer, the jobs that paid the bills while being a writer, and a very real bond between a brother who passed away. In the end the book made me smile, and I can't think of a better thing to say about it. Marty, if I ever get back to NY (which is a possibility since I DO have family in Brooklyn), I'll meet you at the Stoned Crow with my copy of the book to be signed.


Maiken said...

Great job, Kari! I want to borrow it right away!

I have a feeling that one day I'll find that place I fit in; however, it's most likely overseas. :)

Britta said...

Actually, you have family in Harlem. :) But we can get you to wherever Marty is for that autograph.

Kari said...

Crap I can't believe I said the wrong area. Obviously we are very close lol.

Kari said...

Just read on Marty's site that the Stoned Crow is closing. Guess I can't follow up on the end of the book, sad.

Marty Wombacher said...

Wow, thanks so much for the review and nice words, Kari! It's always a thrill for a writer when someone takes the time to read what you've written, I really appreciate you reading my book! And let me know when you get to New York (Harlem is in New York and just a subway ride away from where I live) and I'll buy the drinks! Sorry it won't be at the Stoned Crow, but we can go to Sylvia's in Harlem! Happy New Year and thanks again!

Anonymous said...

kari great post and review...i read "firetruck" cover to cover in one setting...i know marty says that each "chapter" is stand alone...thank you for enlightening your followers to a great read...out and out laugter, some snickers and occasionally a tear or two...healthy new year to you and yours


Bethany said...

Oh... this sounds like a great read. I'm not surprised at all that you were able to read the chapters when earlier, you weren't sure when that would happen. Isn't it amazing how when we put something "out there" that we want to do, it usually happens.

You will get to the Stoned Crow and Marty will love meeting you.