Saturday, May 21, 2011

Hoping Doesn't Make it Possible

The book I'm reading at the moment assumes some questionable scenarios, like the fact that a third world country has jumped ahead of the everyone in a particular type of technology, and nobody else knew about it. Now they are teaming up with a rogue general of the US in a military coup to take over the US government. Yeah, not likely.

It turns out that this technology isn't really key to the story, so I don't know why the author went through the trouble of concocting the thread in the first place. The other parts of the story are actually pretty good.

The thread seems to more than anything else, detract from the real story. Unless he was trying to make a political statement of some sort, I don't see the point.

The end result is a story that doesn't hold together. Hoping that a thing could be true, doesn't necessarily make it true and in this case doesn't help the story.

Have you read any books where the author made a leap that was just a little too far? Or maybe way too far?

Monday, May 9, 2011

Wish I could have met him

Have you ever read a biography and mumbled to yourself "I sure wish I could have met him". (or her)

It just happened to me.

I am almost done with "Fighter Pilot, The memoirs of Legendary Ace Robin Olds", and loving the book. What a great look inside the life of someone who I consider to be larger than life.

I had never heard of Robin Olds before the book, but I am into a kind of history kick right now and thought it might be interesting to check it out. I wasn't disappointed.

I haven't read a lot of autobiographies, and I did have a little trepidation about reading this one, mainly because my first impression is that they might be self-serving. This one is definitely not. I'm sure he left out some bad decisions, some bad behavior, but he didn't leave out all of it, and what came through seemed to be an honest portrayal of a guy I'd like to hang out with. The kind of guy that didn't give a rat's ass about political agendas, or covering up the truth to prevent putting some idiot in a bad light. He spoke his mind no matter what happened because he felt he had to.

I was captured by his ability to "do the right thing, no matter what", and using commonsense instead of relying on stupid rules and regulations that may have been well intentioned, but at the end of the day had nothing to do with commonsense.

There are a lot of flying stories, so if you are into that it's a great book. I had never heard of some of the crazy flying stuff that happened in Vietnam. It was incredible.

But even if you don't like flying the book shows the human side of World War II, Korea, and a bitter description of the Vietnam era.

For me this book is going to have a bittersweet ending. I actually don't want it to end, but I'm going to finish it very soon. And unfortunately there won't be more to the story because Robin Olds passed away in 2007. To me that's really sad. I would have loved the chance to meet the man behind the legend.