THIS WEEK’S OTHER FEATURED BOOKS, “OUT OF TOUCH,” BY RUSTY COATS AND “FAGGOT,” BY FRANK BILLINGSLEY, CAN BE FOUND BY SCROLLING DOWN BELOW THIS POST.
THE BOOK: Some Way Outa Here
PUBLISHED IN: February, 2016
THE AUTHOR: Mark Lauden
THE PUBLISHER: Medium Cool Publishers
SUMMARY: Some Way Outa Here recounts the turbulent year from July 1969 to June 1970, when men walked the moon and students marched in the streets. It’s a joyful and inspiring story about young people who set out to change the world – and each other.
Amid the turmoil of the Vietnam war, high school friends confront the horror of the war and the frustration of hometown apathy. The story is told from the point of view of a teen who must reconcile his zeal for science and his opposition to the war; he is challenged to lead despite paralyzing self-doubts. Two remarkable girls join him in an inspiring and passionate journey.
The young rebels are plunged into the crucible of the Cambodia invasion and Kent State killings. Like America, they each have to decide which path to take. Some Way Outa Here is about finding that path. It captures the wonder of a magical time that flourished briefly, leaving America forever changed. It’s about promises and secrets, dreams and nightmares, and coming of age.
THE BACK STORY: We all tell stories about growing up. I was lucky (or unlucky) enough to grow up in a time when young people took on the job of leading a battle to stop a terrible war. Some of the things that happened seem unbelievable now – even to people who were there. I wanted to capture the color and spirit of this era, along with the turmoil and confusion we all went through.
WHY THIS TITLE?: Dylan’s All Along the Watchtower – and Jimi Hendrix’ apocalyptic cover version – epitomized the end of the 1960s. For me, the idea that “there must be some way outa here…” drew me in from the first hearing. It’s the vision of being on the rampart in the middle of nowhere, with wildcats prowling, riders approaching, and the wind blowing hard…there must be some way out. Who hasn’t been there?
The passage of years helped me understand that in 1969-70, I needed a way out of a time when nothing made sense, a place that was oblivious to the madness. Life in the late 1960s was like the place you would find if you fell down a rabbit hole, where nothing was quite real, and you wanted to find the way out, back into the sunshine. Dylan’s words and Jimi’s anguished voice and thrashing guitar said it best.
WHY WOULD SOMEONE WANT TO READ IT? If you were there, you’ll revel in hearing the time and the people recreated. If you’re younger, you’ll be amazed at the world your parents or grandparents grew up in.
REVIEW COMMENTS: “This book is fascinating, beautifully written and original.”
“What an amazing story! I loved reading about the people and the relationships. All the characters came alive for me. It brought back so many memories. I couldn’t put it down.”
“A passionate and personal tale of coming of age in an epic year, in the tumultuous world the ‘60s created.” – Mary Kay Magistad, Public Radio International
AUTHOR PROFILE: I’m a storyteller.
I wasn’t always that way: I learned to speak to an audience in the most painful way possible: standing in front of a thousand people, including a governor and congressmen – I froze and couldn’t even read my notes. Somehow, after an excruciating pause, I thought of a story to tell. It was good enough to receive a standing ovation. Ever since, I’ve known that stories are the way to talk (or write) about the most important things.
I’ve been writing and speaking about my work – architecture, technology, media – for years. My stories help me understand the world, and hopefully they bring a few insights and inspirations to my listeners and readers.
AUTHOR COMMENTS: A great historian called her subject “a distant mirror.” I like to think that the story of Some Way Outa Here is a not-so-distant mirror that helps us see how we became who we are now. The events and the characters are bound together in a dance that echoes down the years to today. By seeing – and remembering – who we were, we can better understand who we are.
SAMPLE CHAPTER: Read the first chapter-and-a-half in the Kindle preview: http://amzn.to/1T7kYJ4/
PRICE: Print $11.99; Kindle $3.99