FRIDAY’S FINDS: Book Review by: Jo E. Pinto The Things They Carried

FRIDAY’S FINDS: Book Review by: Jo E. Pinto The Things They Carried

Today, whilst going through and clearing old folders, I ran across this wonderful Friday’s Find.
Here’s Jo with what might be a great weekend read for you.

Keep reading after Jo’s review for an important announcement.

Book Review by: Jo E. Pinto
The Things They Carried
by Tim O’Brien

Available on Audible:

“The Things They Carried” by Vietnam veteran Tim O’brien, which was rightfully nominated for a Pulitzer in its day, was haunting–okay, sometimes downright disturbing–to listen to. But I expected nothing less from a series of short stories about the Vietnam War. I found the stories authentic–often sad, brutal, raw, and memorable.

The narrator, Bryan Cranston, played Walter White on TV’s “Breaking Bad.” He did an amazing job reading this book–not too dramatic, not too grim, but not trying to make a topic cheerful that was never meant to have a drop of cheer in its telling.

I’m not surprised this book has been used as a teaching tool in high school and college classrooms across the country for nearly the last three decades. Its examples of dialogue, character development, and vivid description are not only useful for illustrating points relevant to history and creative writing; they are also important for pondering ideas related to life. War veterans or not, we all carry what we need to cope with our journey through the world. Some of what we haul is battle gear; most of it is baggage. It’s a wonder any of us manage to set one foot in front of the other, day in and day out, with all the emotional weight we drag along. +Grudges, fears, superstitions, traditions that live on for their own sake–many emotional items are quite heavy in the end.

*Reader’s Note!
Here’s an important message from Jo!

June is Audio Book Month!
by Jo Elizabeth Pinto

Hey everyone! Summer is here and have I got a sizzling way to celebrate for you.
June is full of reasons to celebrate. Besides Father’s Day and the first day of summer, which is also the longest day of the year, June is also Audio book Month!

When Thomas Edison invented the phonograph in 1878, “phonographic books” for the blind were one of the uses he had in mind for his new machine. In 1879, he showed off the capacity of the phonograph at the Royal Institution in Britain, where a recorded verse of Tennyson’s poetry was played back for those in attendance.

Unfortunately, Edison’s idea about audio books had to wait. The original cylinders used with the phonograph held about 4 minutes of sound, and even the more modern flat platters only increased the duration to 12 minutes or so, hardly practical for the recording of long chapter books. While the sixty- and ninety-minute cassettes developed in the seventies helped the situation, it wasn’t until the invention of the CD some twenty years later that Audiobooks truly blossomed.

Audio book Month celebrates the wonderful talking tales and the millions of people who enjoy them every year. Thomas Edison may have been thinking of the blind when he shouted “Mary Had a Little Lamb!” into his first phonograph, but sighted listeners have come to love audio books as well. Commuters and travelers on buses, trains, and airplanes heat up their headphones as they make their way from one place to another all over the world. People listen in the shower, in their gardens and kitchens, and in their beds as they drift off to sleep at night. Who says you can’t read in the dark?

To celebrate Audio book Month, I’ll be giving away free promotion codes for audio copies of my award-winning novel “The Bright Side of Darkness” or my recently released book “Daddy Won’t Let Mom Drive the Car: True Tales of Parenting in the Dark.” To obtain your code, you must have an account with Audible, and you must email me at so I know which book you want and where to send your promotion code. That’s all there is to it. Happy listening!

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