The summer of 1969 was one of the most tumultuous in American history.
In Elin Hilderbrand’s new novel, Summer of ’69, the tumult is also affecting the Levin/Foley family. Every summer, the family spends their summer at their grandmother’s house in Nantucket. But this summer is different.
The eldest, Blair is pregnant and at home at the request of her husband. It appears that her marriage has reached it’s breaking point. Kirby, the second oldest is determined to prove that she can be an adult. While firmly believing in social justice movement of the era, Kirby works at a hotel at nearby Martha’s Vineyard. Tiger, the only son, is serving in Vietnam. Jessie, the youngest, is not happy to be left with her mother and grandmother, both who seem to be holding onto secrets.
I really enjoyed this book. I loved the characters, I loved the narrative and I loved that even though this book is set 50 years ago, it still feels relevant. I have to commend the author for balancing the number of characters she does. It can be difficult to ensure that every character is given equal time on the page, but Ms. Hilderbrand has done it.
I’ve never had the inclination to make a career out of public service. But I admire those who do.
The late Senator John McCain spent his adult life in public service; first in the military and then in government. When he passed away last summer, his passing left a hole in this country that will never be filled.
Last week, you know who went after the late Senator in the same way that a school yard bully attacks a classmate whom they perceive to be weak.
Methinks the gentleman (if you want to call him that) is jealous. Senator McCain made public service his life’s work for his adult life. He fought for this country and her citizens during the Vietnam War. After being captured and tortured, he refused release. After retiring from military service, he spent thirty plus years in the service of the American voter. In every sense of the word, he is a hero.
I could go on, but I will let the late Senator’s daughter speak, as only she can.
P.S. I have to wonder where Senator McCain’s Republican “friends” are on this matter? Are they man or woman enough to stand up to you know who or are they more concerned about saving their own skins?
The last three generations have seen profound and world altering change. My grandparent’s generation watched the world change due to The Great Depression, World War II and the attack at Pearl Harbor. The idyllic world of the 1950’s that my parents grew up in were forever shattered by the assassination of JFK and The Vietnam War.
My generation will be forever defined by one day: September 11th, 2001.
Anyone who knows me (or has read this blog) knows that New York City is in my blood and my bones. My family has been here for over 100 years. My immigrant great-grandparents came to this city and to America to escape the poverty and the oppression of Eastern Europe. Though not without its challenges, this city and her people gave my ancestors the start they needed to provide for future generations.
On September 11th, 2001, New York City was dealt a blow that nearly crippled her and her people. Coming of age in a post 9/11 world has forever changed my generation. We see the consequences of hate and prejudice. We also see the beauty of people coming together and seeing each other not as labels, but simply as human beings.
Where I currently work is very close to the 9/11 Memorial. Most of the time, I don’t pay attention to how close I am. This week, I could not help but think about how close my office is to where the Twin Towers stood.
Tomorrow is 9/11. We will never forget the lives lost and the emotional scar that will never completely heal.