Review by jimthorne2 -- Strong Heart by Charlie Sheldon

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jimthorne2
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Review by jimthorne2 -- Strong Heart by Charlie Sheldon

Post by jimthorne2 » 07 Aug 2017, 15:19

[Following is a volunteer review of "Strong Heart" by Charlie Sheldon.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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The book, Strong Heart by Charlie Sheldon, introduces the reader to a riveting tale of the way a family situation is dealt with in a very unusual manner. The setting of Indian people in the Northwest is used to help a troubled young girl who experiences the impact of her heritage on her life while unwittingly leading others to realize the value of listening to tales from the past.

William, Tom, and Myra are family members who take Sarah, a troubled teenager, on a previously planned camping trip into the wilderness of Olympic National Park in Northwest Washington State. The journey involves physical difficulties; they tell stories around the campfire; and, experience some startling events. Sarah turns out to be the one who benefits the most from the family adventures.

Sheldon brilliantly combines the story of a growing teenager with another story about ancient Indian travels and society. I like his descriptions of contemporary and ancient people with their beliefs and frustrations with cultures that are both familiar and unfamiliar. I like the Indian lore and wilderness travel stories. I like the way modern and ancient cultures successfully link together in the storyline. I appreciate the way the plot and subplots work together to produce a desire on the part of the reader to keep turning pages.

There is nothing about this book that I dislike. The writer does everything well and with excitement. The pace moves along at a walking speed since walking takes up a good amount of time in the story.

The perspective of the book includes insights from both young and old about the world in general and the wilderness in particular. The author honors Indian culture by allowing their mores to flow in and out of the character’s actions. The dialogue is crisp and relevant. The writer uses the structure of the story to allow the reader to think as well as participate. Subplots add to the color and tone of the tale. The maps at the beginning of the book help the reader appreciate distances involved in the story. Descriptions of mountains, streams and even storms are vivid and colorful.

I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I recommend the book to young readers who wonder what it would be like for a teenager to go on a wilderness journey. I recommend the book to adult readers who will relate well to the way the writer treats grandparents, antagonists, and friends. More than a wilderness adventure, the book is good in bringing out the value of traditional knowledge in a world where scientific facts sometimes overshadow reality itself.

******
Strong Heart
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juliusotinyo
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Post by juliusotinyo » 11 Aug 2017, 00:19

I've also read and reviewed this book. I really loved the Amerindian history angle. I wish the author would write a story purely based on Sarah's journey.

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Post by jimthorne2 » 11 Aug 2017, 14:29

First time I have heard the term 'Amerindian'. I like it. Being from Mohawk tribe I relate to Iroquois but the whole of North America was Indian before it was 'settled'.
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Post by juliusotinyo » 11 Aug 2017, 14:33

jimthorne2 wrote:First time I have heard the term 'Amerindian'. I like it. Being from Mohawk tribe I relate to Iroquois but the whole of North America was Indian before it was 'settled'.
The political correct term is Amerindian. I learnt this a while back while visiting South America. Some guy in Nicaragua told me Indian is an insult.

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Post by jimthorne2 » 11 Aug 2017, 14:49

Well, I appreciate the view of the guy from Nicaragua but I am very happy to refer to my Indian heritage. I'm not sure about politically correct terms. I always have to ask "Whose politics?" :)
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Post by juliusotinyo » 11 Aug 2017, 14:58

jimthorne2 wrote:Well, I appreciate the view of the guy from Nicaragua but I am very happy to refer to my Indian heritage. I'm not sure about politically correct terms. I always have to ask "Whose politics?" :)
Its always nice to hear all these different views. The Nicaraguan was easily offended with the term. Personally, i believe Indians come from India. There's​ been no proper name to give people of American descent. So, Amerindian sounds fine for me. But i respect you either way.

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Post by jimthorne2 » 11 Aug 2017, 16:59

Ok. Indians = India. Amerindian = original people of north and south America. I think 'native' was often used but that would be insulting, I guess. The lore of the tribes probably just referred to the people as 'the people'. I'm not sure why we have to identify people by their race. I don't do it myself but many feel obligated to do just that.
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Post by juliusotinyo » 11 Aug 2017, 23:11

jimthorne2 wrote:Ok. Indians = India. Amerindian = original people of north and south America. I think 'native' was often used but that would be insulting, I guess. The lore of the tribes probably just referred to the people as 'the people'. I'm not sure why we have to identify people by their race. I don't do it myself but many feel obligated to do just that.
I am African, from a small Kenyan-Ugandan-Sudanese tribe. I would not call it race per se... Like you said, the tribal lore has words for outsiders - non of your tribe-ish. The same with English, i guess. When colonialists came to our region they grouped my tribe with a bunch of others and gave us a name. Identity has been an issue since then, even where we live was given a name we don't associate with to this day over 100years later.

I think for the sake of identity not race, a common people need to be referred to by same terms, preferably of their choosing. I hope I am making sense to you.

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Post by jimthorne2 » 12 Aug 2017, 15:13

I agree thoroughly. I served as a missionary to the Chewa people of Malawi who were classified as "bantu". It seemed to me that language was more important than tribal identification. Maybe that is the case more today. I think our identity is something we have a right and obligation to describe and defend. Having said that I have never found it necessary to either describe or defend my identity except in a religious sense.
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Post by Darakhshan Nazir » 12 Aug 2017, 15:18

Very interesting story . Thank you for such a nice
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Post by juliusotinyo » 12 Aug 2017, 20:08

jimthorne2 wrote:I agree thoroughly. I served as a missionary to the Chewa people of Malawi who were classified as "bantu". It seemed to me that language was more important than tribal identification. Maybe that is the case more today. I think our identity is something we have a right and obligation to describe and defend. Having said that I have never found it necessary to either describe or defend my identity except in a religious sense.
Thanks for sharing Jim, its been fun. Let's continue soon.

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Post by Ayosinmi » 12 Aug 2017, 20:48

Nice review. I've read so many reviews of this book, I rather enjoy yours. Please check out my reviews of Breaking sandcastles, Escape, Lemoncella cocktail, My trip to Adele, and Searching for Paradise. I look forward to hearing from you.
Lord, protect me from my friends; I can take care of my enemies.
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Post by jimthorne2 » 13 Aug 2017, 15:01

Having read so many reviews perhaps you ought to read the book!
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Post by Ayosinmi » 13 Aug 2017, 15:14

Hahahahaha ? I will read it. Definitely. I hope to meet Sarah, William, Tom and Myra. And see the world through their eyes. Cheers
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Post by jimthorne2 » 13 Aug 2017, 17:49

Gotcha! Anyhow, I think you will be surprised and pleased with the reading adventure. I was and I really liked the book. There's something about reading that allows us to enjoy the adventure without getting wet in the processes.
Jim Thorne

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