Unexpected Gifts - S.R. Mallery
Unexpected Gifts by S.R. Mallery is as the title suggests, totally unexpected and makes the perfect gift for all history buffs. Sonia is a troubled young woman in a destructive relationship with the lead of a popular rock group who finds solace and meaning to her life when her mother takes her to the attic and unleashes the family history from a chest of unexpected gifts - diaries, old family photos, cinema stubs, medals, newspaper clippings, the list is endless but engrossingly fascinating.
As Sonia's father Sam, lies disabled in his bed, stricken by the insidious after-effects of the Vietnam War, Sonia travels back in time and lives that conflict as Sam did, not the gung-ho movie version, but the blood and guts, stinking mud, torrential rain, jungle-rot version. And the after effects of her history lesson remain entrenched in her mind giving her the ability to re-evaluate her own life.
Sonia travels back to the Depression, helps build The Empire State Building, survives The Titanic, dances a marathon, becomes embroiled in racial hatred in The Deep South, Martin Luther King, race riots, Timothy Leary and drugs and so much more. She learns of the family heritage from Bulgaria and Ireland, but most of all she learns how to live.
If only my history teacher would have taught history like Sarah has, enriching it with living, feeling people that the reader can equate to, I would have been a better student.
This FIVE STAR historical drama is a must read of the highest order and I cant recommend this marvellous book enough.