Dandelion Wine – Chapter Fourteen

Chapter fourteen begins as the Spaulding family prepares to shake out the rugs, Douglas and Tom’s imaginations turn this chore into a magical discovery, fancying that they see the happenings and neighbors in their town in the stains of one rug. A lavish metaphor at the end of the chapter describes Tom beating the rug… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapter Fourteen

Dandelion Wine – Chapter Thirteen

Chapter thirteen continues “The Happiness Machine” theme. Leo, still infatuated with building the Happiness Machine, asks Lena if she is “pleased, contented, joyful, or delighted.” Lena gives a mocking reply which offends Leo who is taking his goal seriously, and they get into an argument. The quarrel ends only when Lena realizes that she’s burned… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapter Thirteen

Dandelion Wine – Chapters Twelve

Chapter twelve could be titled “The Lawns of Summer”. It is another interception of Leo’s story which re-focuses on the Spaulding family. Douglas’ grandfather begins the day, happily reveling in the sound of the lawn mower running on their lawn, an indicator to him that summer has truly begun. Grandma, however, tells him that Bill… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapters Twelve

Dandelion Wine – Chapters Eleven

Chapter eleven is a short chapter. It picks-up on the topic of the Happiness Machine. The setting is the front swing. Leo sits with his wife Lena. The time is night. Lena tells him that they don’t need a Happiness Machine. Leo says that he’s going to build the Machine for others. He says it… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapters Eleven

Review: Guns of the Civil War

“Guns of the Civil War” by Dennis Adler is a wonderful book. The work provides a much need detailed reference for the guns used in the US Civil War. The release of the book is timely as it helps celebrate the 150th anniversary of the war. The book is a high quality publication with a… Continue reading Review: Guns of the Civil War

Dandelion Wine – Chapter Ten

Chapter Ten concerns the night. Interposed between Leo’s stories is an extra story referring to Douglas’ family. It begins without fanfare. We find Tom running to Mrs. Singer’s store to get ice cream at nine o’clock on the same night for himself and Douglas. However, by nine-thirty, Douglas has not returned. This causes his worried… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapter Ten

Dandelion Wine – Chapters Eight and Nine

Chapters eight and nine tell of the “Happiness Machine”. After listening to old people’s depressing and defeatist conversations, Leo Auffmann maintains they shouldn’t dwell on such unhappy topics. Douglas and his grandfather, passing by, suggest to Leo that he should make a Happiness Machine. After the talking people laugh at this apparently ridiculous idea, Leo… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapters Eight and Nine

Battle for the City of the Dead: In the Shadow of the Golden Dome, Najaf, August 2004

The year was 2004. During the spring and summer the Iraqi nation was overwhelmed with violence. The nation’s Shiites and Sunnis headlined the sectarian fighting. The Army of Iraq had been disbanded by the United States Proconsul. The results of his actions were infusing a large number of angry young men into the streets of… Continue reading Battle for the City of the Dead: In the Shadow of the Golden Dome, Najaf, August 2004

Dandelion Wine – Chapter Seven

Chapter seven accomplishes another ritual of summer with the setting up of the porch swing as a place for night-long conversation. Douglas comments on how sitting in the porch swing feels somehow “right” because one would always be comforted by the droning, ceaseless voices of the adults. In keeping up with the fantasy-tinged atmosphere of… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapter Seven

Dandelion Wine – Chapter Six

Douglas Spaulding lets Tom see a tablet of paper that he is using to record his summer in, with two sections labeled “Rites and Ceremonies” and “Discoveries and Revelations.” The contents of the two sections are what would be expected for a kid, including a “revelation” that kids and grown-ups don’t get along with each… Continue reading Dandelion Wine – Chapter Six