Thursday, October 1, 2015

Driving Grandfather by John Redstand

Grandpa was once an airplane mechanic during World War 2.  Now he is chauffeured around doing errands with his grandson.  Through their travels, Grandpa regales his grandson with elaborate and humorous stories from his time in the Army.  The grandson is a contractor who empties out abandoned buildings, while trying to help grandpa renew his license, among other things makes for a hilarious tale.

This novel is full of humorous and all-too-real stories told by a spirited old man.  Redstand has the magic ability to weave present day with memories from long ago.  While Grandpa may be seated in the passenger seat, it felt as if I was in the backseat listening to his stories as well.  The author has the disclaimer that the stories told are historical fiction, but they feel as if they are real stories that have happened.  One thing I particularly enjoyed was that Grandpa told stories about the men he was serving with rather than the war itself.  There was a time when I had the honor of talking to men about when they served with my grandfather, reading this book brought back the memory of some of those stories.  That element in itself adds a personal and almost intimate touch to the story.

In about 133 pages, Redstand develops his characters and story so much so that readers don't want this book to end.  Almost every review I have read is agreement, no one who has read this book wanted it to end.  We all want more.  The book is fast paced, but that is only because you want to "hear" the next story to be told, you want to see the antics grandpa and grandson will get into next together.  Throughout the book we see an incredible bond between grandpa and grandson that is completely heartwarming.  The character of grandpa reminded me of my own grandfathers, and miss them terribly.

There honestly is no way to pick a favorite part of the book because it is wonderfully written.  Redstand does a phenomenal job with the book and I look forward to being able to read anything by this talented author.  The description of the book amazon mentions that John takes us on a tour of the last few months of his grandfather's life; this is a tour you don't want to miss.  This book is the perfect way to honor family and keep a loved one and their legacy alive.  I give this book a 5 out of 5, and recommend it to everyone.

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