Sons of My Fathers by Michael Simpson
I read this first book, Sons of My Fathers, by Michael Simpson with much enjoyment. It was an easy narrative spanning over 100 years and moves back and forth easily between the story of Baylis Simpson in 1864, to Mike, Ron and Alex six generations later.
Each story is harrowing in its own way, with Baylis’ family and home destroyed, physically and mentally by deserters during the Civil War, and the latter Simpsons harrowing march through the Vietnam War years. Sometimes I felt a little bit of American Graffiti but the two stories were too exciting and informative to keep comparing.
It’s indeed hard to realize that this is Mr. Simpson's first book, though he is a screenwriter, director and producer of note. In his narrative of his ancestor, Baylis, I could feel and hear and practically smell, the horrors and tragedy of his family and the war as he tries to make his way back home. Then moving to Mike as he gives us his tale from age 10, and the night of The Dixie Flyer, to growing up with his older brother and his best friend Alex, both heroically cool to the young boy. Then the decision that his brother, Ron, makes during the Vietnam War that almost destroys his parents.
Though I knew where his dad was coming from-a Marine in WWII and a fine upstanding, godly member of his town in Georgia-I was also remembering how I felt at that time, which was about the time of the Mai Lai Massacre.
Thank you, Mr. Simpson for your clear vision of these times and events, and your solid narrative that made me see things through your eyes. Great book!
If interested you can buy here.