4 out of 4 stars
Share This Review
Dreamers Refuse to Be Victims is an autobiography of Milan Voticky’s life. He begins his story in Czechoslovakia and takes the reader along with him as he and his family escape into China, and later to Canada. Throughout this novel, Voticky will emphasize and demonstrate his determination not to become a victim (particularly of Fascism or Communism). In spite of just wanting a normal life, he pens “Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin had other ideas for us- the first wanted to murder us and the second wanted to imprison us.”
Voticky portrayed his mother as an incredibly strong and independent woman-if not a bit terrifying when it came to defending her family. In his early childhood, he called an older child a name. The twelve-year-old pulled out a dagger and cut Voticky on his arm. When the author’s mother learned of this, she caught the culprit and beat him badly enough to land him in a hospital.
Later, when he first heard the Flying Tiger Fighter Squadron overhead, he determined then that he would one day become a pilot. And, as predicted, he did eventually fly one day- but for the Royal Canadian Air Force.
The final chapter of his autobiography is devoted to the Dreamers. There he imparts wisdom for these Dreamers to find a country that will welcome them and allow them to become the productive citizens that they dream of being.
I especially loved the author’s sense of humor. With his quick wit, he managed to bring another perspective to his story. His dry humor had me laughing out loud in several parts of this novel. One example was when a sailor asked him where there were broads. When the author questioned him as to what a broad was, the sailor informed him it was a girl. The young Voticky responded, “What do you want girls for? We’re having a good time. Why spoil it with girls?”
Also, I appreciated the photographs and documents that he posted in many chapters throughout the book. These articles served to add a personal touch and helped me to visualize and understand his family, life, and the red tape they had to go through simply to remain alive. At just over 270 pages, this book is a compelling memoir to just how determined one man can be to avoid being a victim of his circumstances. Voticky did whatever he could to better himself and his family, all the while pursuing and achieving one dream after another.
Additionally, I loved that the author applauded common sense and thinking for yourself, and he continued to drive these points home throughout his story. Because I am not a fan of the intricacies of investment, the part of his book that addressed that topic was what I liked least. However, his investment career was mentioned in the description of the book. Therefore, to deduct points would seem unfair. I found no errors in this book, so it certainly appears to have been exceptionally edited.
Given my points noted above, I am pleased to award Dreamers Refuse to Be Victims by Milan “Lou” Voticky 4 out of 4 stars. There were no graphic scenes of violence or sex, and there were only a handful of instances of profanity. I enthusiastically recommend Voticky’s novel to anyone who loves autobiographies. Readers who prefer non-fiction may elect to pass on this one. If you are particularly interested in stories that pertain to history, immigration, piloting, or investments- you will find Voticky’s story compelling.
Dreamers Refuse to be Victims
View: on Bookshelves | on Amazon