BOOK REVIEW ~ Poetic License

Poetic License:  A Memoir


Synopsis:
At age forty, with two growing children and a new consulting company she’d recently founded, Gretchen Cherington, daughter of Pulitzer Prize–winning poet Richard Eberhart, faced a dilemma: Should she protect her parents’ well-crafted family myths while continuing to silence her own voice? Or was it time to challenge those myths and speak her truth—even the unbearable truth that her generous and kind father had sexually violated her ?

In this powerful memoir, aided by her father’s extensive archives at Dartmouth College and interviews with some of her father’s best friends, Cherington candidly and courageously retraces her past to make sense of her father and herself. From the women’s movement of the ’60s and the back-to-the-land movement of the ’70s to Cherington’s consulting work through three decades with powerful executives to her eventual decision to speak publicly in the formative months of #MeToo, Poetic License is one woman’s story of speaking truth in a world where, too often, men still call the shots.


My thoughts: This was an interesting read. I try not to read much of the descriptions, before I read the book as I prefer to go in cold if I can, or close to it. I enjoyed following Gretchen as she shared what it was like growing up with her poet father as he wrote, slogging along and trying to improve himself as a poet and studying the old poets. She saw how he eventually made some headway in his career, writing poems that were recognized and gaining some visibility.

His career took off, book sales improved. He began winning different awards and attaining more prestigious posts as a result. It was her father with all of his fascinating friends that she wanted to know about and understand more. He was often gone on trips, going to visit his poet and writer friends and have a good time. She thought if she could figure out her father, she would understand herself. This became more important when they began having problems between them, her and her Dad.

It’s a complicated story of a family, and how their early years affected the rest of their lives. Advanced electronic review copy was provided by NetGalley, the author Gretchen Cherington, and publisher She Writes Press, for my unbiased review.


PoeticLicense


Pubisher:  She Writes Press – 261 pages
Publication:  Aug 4th, 2020
My rating:  4/5 Stars


 

The Author– At age forty, with two growing children and a new consulting company she’d recently founded, Gretchen Cherington, daughter of Pulitzer Prize–winning poet Richard Eberhart, faced a dilemma: Should she protect her parents’ well-crafted family myths while continuing to silence her own voice? Or was it time to challenge those myths and speak her truth―even the unbearable truth that her generous and kind father had sexually violated her?

In this powerful memoir, aided by her father’s extensive archives at Dartmouth College and interviews with some of her father’s best friends, Cherington candidly and courageously retraces her past to make sense of her father and herself. From the women’s movement of the ’60s and the back-to-the-land movement of the ’70s to Cherington’s consulting work through three decades with powerful executives to her eventual decision to speak publicly in the formative months of #MeToo, Poetic License is one woman’s story of speaking truth in a world where, too often, men still call the shots.


BOOK REVIEW ~ Hippie Chick

Hippie Chick: Coming of Age in the ‘60s

This was pretty different as you follow Ilene, who is the youngest of six kids and the last to leave home in New Jersey. Her mother died when she was sixteen, and while she loves her father, she wants out of the house as he is difficult and temperamental. When her sister Carole provides her with a plane ticket to California she finally has her way out and joins her and her lawyer husband there. She starts growing up rather quickly from this point though she is still naive to the ways of men. Her life will become quite bohemian in short order without even trying. Things get even crazier as it goes along, and Ilene seems to land in one jam after another with Carole and/or her hubby coming to her rescue in her younger years. Not only is she a hippie chick with a love for marijuana and the occasional LSD trip; but she seems to become a vagabond too, moving more than anyone I’ve ever heard of that wasn’t military.

This is certainly a read from the times, a memoir of Ilene’s different circumstances back during the 1960s as she traveled the US and Hawaii trying to figure out where she belonged. I’d recommend for more adventurous memoir readers, and those who like coming of age stories in the 60s & 70s. Advance electronic review copy was provided by NetGalley, author Ilene English, and the publisher.


51e4LQKf-4L


Publisher: She Writes Press – 334 pages
Publication: Sep 24th, 2019
RATED: 4/5 Stars


 

The Author-  Born in New Jersey as the youngest of six to a mother who was seriously ill, Ilene English became something of a lost child. In spite of this, she was a free spirit, her life fueled by an innate sense of optimism and determination. As a young woman, she became an early psychedelic pioneer, experimenting with LSD during a time when it was still legal and its effects were not yet fully comprehended. During the sixties, she, along with an entire community of fellow trippers, innocently thought that they could change the world into one that valued love over materialism through psychedelics. Today, years later, English is a licensed psychotherapist. Her life experience informs her work as a healer and a teacher. Hippie Chick is her first book.