Official Review: I Guess I Just Wasn't Thinking

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Mercy Bolo
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Official Review: I Guess I Just Wasn't Thinking

Post by Mercy Bolo » 07 Apr 2018, 14:31

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "I Guess I Just Wasn't Thinking" by W. K. "Jake" Wehrell.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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In his book I Guess I Just Wasn't Thinking Part One: Instead of Skipping Stones, author W.K. "Jake" Wehrell weaves together a world of fiction revolving around the life of the protagonist, Roger Yahnke. The story begins with young Roger wanting to gift his mom with something special but ends up not getting the gift he'd lustfully eyed. Disappointed, he buys his mom something else, which she gladly accepts but leaves Roger feeling like a failure. The story then progresses through his schooling years all the way to his budding career as a navy pilot.

Although the story spans from the time Roger is nine years old to when he's in his mid-twenties, there are a lot of memorable and often hilarious situations that he encounters during this time. The author paints a realistic picture of what it was like to grow up in New Jersey in the 1940's and 1950's and his vivid but subtly done descriptions had me giving my approval all the way through. I was also pleased that each of the chapters reads as a stand-alone detailing specific experiences that Roger went through, plus the lessons he picked up from them. The story ends on a suspenseful note when Roger develops an unforeseen condition that he very well knows will negatively impact his love life. This is also the building block for the second book in the series, Part Two: The French Riviera, Leo, June, and Big Trouble, which I look forward to reading.

Roger's likable, hardworking character is constant throughout the book and his winning streak is maintained throughout his life. On more than one occasion, he has unfortunate encounters with bullies but he still maintains his cool. One time he and his mom were working at the same summer camp when Roger accidentally made fun of the camp caretaker's sons. This put him in a potentially dangerous situation as the enraged caretaker was out to get him. To keep himself safe, Roger literally stayed close to his mom during the remaining camp duration and was more than glad when the job eventually ended and they returned home.

Themes of friendship, family, hard work, obedience, religion, romance and career growth are artfully tackled. I found a lot of this material used because it's still relevant in today's society. Narrated in the first person from Roger's perspective, this adds a very personal tone to the book and It felt like I was listening to a close friend narrate to me his life story.

The only fault I found with this book is that it lacks a table of contents but that doesn't prevent me from giving it a rating of 4 out of 4 stars. It seems to be professionally edited, thus free of noticeable grammatical errors. It's a book I would recommend to anyone who craves a good read and anyone with children because besides being sprinkled with parent-child interactions, it also provides insight into the workings of young man's mind.

******
I Guess I Just Wasn't Thinking
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Post by cpru68 » 08 Apr 2018, 14:08

This sounds like a book that I would enjoy reading, and with a promise of a second book, who could bypass that? The title reminds me of something a kid would say in response to an angry parent's demand as to why a certain behavior was chosen. From your review it would seem that the material is both humorous and poignant. I think this one is going on to the "want to read shelf". Thank you for a good review.
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Post by Dolor » 08 Apr 2018, 14:10

I feel like his story is a gloomy one. It's like a real story (not a fiction) that is told to impart some lessons in life. I'm glad you enjoyed reading this book and gave it a perfect 4 out of 4 rating.

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Post by Mercy Bolo » 08 Apr 2018, 14:13

cpru68 wrote:
08 Apr 2018, 14:08
This sounds like a book that I would enjoy reading, and with a promise of a second book, who could bypass that? The title reminds me of something a kid would say in response to an angry parent's demand as to why a certain behavior was chosen. From your review it would seem that the material is both humorous and poignant. I think this one is going on to the "want to read shelf". Thank you for a good review.
You have it right. I like that it's the kind of humor that creeps in during unexpected events.
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Mercy Bolo
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Post by Mercy Bolo » 08 Apr 2018, 14:17

Dolor wrote:
08 Apr 2018, 14:10
I feel like his story is a gloomy one. It's like a real story (not a fiction) that is told to impart some lessons in life. I'm glad you enjoyed reading this book and gave it a perfect 4 out of 4 rating.
I also thought it would be a non-fiction story, but the author clearly clarifies at the beginning that it's a work of fiction. I, however, understand why you would consider it gloomy. It's about the everyday life of a young boy.
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Post by kelvok2014 » 08 Apr 2018, 14:30

In his book I Guess I Just Wasn't Thinking Part One: Instead of Skipping Stones, author W.K. "Jake" Wehrell reveals a moving narration of the dynamics of family and friends, a wonderful achievement in which we share Roger’s adventures, experiences, and challenges with a true sense of growing up in a more innocent time. This is accomplished writing and a pleasure to recommend.
It is very enjoyable to read and I recommend it to everyone.

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Post by JuliaKay » 08 Apr 2018, 16:18

Roger sounds like a very entertaining character. It will be interesting to read this as it takes place in New Jersey during such an interesting time period, especially in that area. I like that whole chapters are devoted to certain situations, and I am glad the author uses humor so well in this work. Thank you for a great review.
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Post by kandscreeley » 09 Apr 2018, 08:04

I can imagine that growing up in the 40s and 50s would be quite interesting. I guess every era had it's own challenges. Still, I have to be in a specific mood to enjoy a memoir. I'll keep this in mind for one of those times. Thanks for another good review!
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Post by VictoriaMcMillen » 09 Apr 2018, 21:26

The book seems quite interesting based on your review. I am interested in learning more about Roger and his journey's in life. I enjoy personal stories with their ups and downs. Thanks for your review!
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Post by Miriam Molina » 10 Apr 2018, 03:49

The story reads like a memoir written by a young soldier who was very close to his mom. It's refreshing to read a book about somebody who had a happy childhood.
This would be a good addition to the family library.

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Post by bigirimanacelestin » 10 Apr 2018, 04:28

Your review make it sound like Interesting. How he narrated the story, his ideas wnd his style made me think about my current book list. Thank you for great review.
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Post by Libs_Books » 10 Apr 2018, 11:47

I'm not a huge fan of autobiography, but this does sound like something I might enjoy if I stumbled over it - but perhaps not one I'd go looking for. Being a one-time fan of Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum, I've heard a fair bit about New Jersey and would like to know more. Thanks for a clear and helpful review.

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Post by crediblereading2 » 12 Apr 2018, 21:32

Roger's character is quite inspiring. He is a hard worker who has a resilient spirit. He is also thoughtful and fun loving. He is a role model indeed.

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