Railroad Man (A Review by Katrina Parker Williams)
Railroad Man is a beautifully descriptive tale of a man’s journey through life, told through a series of flashbacks. Mickey MacDonald, a railroad man, suffers his first major loss, one of many, when he is not allowed to marry his first love, Marianne. This decision prompts him to leave his home and take a job as a railroad man. Throughout his life, he experiences more heartaches as well as successes during a time period when life was arduous for most people living during the Great Depression.
The story spans generally fifty years, chronicling events in Mickey’s life from his relationships with his family, with the love of his life, and with his wife, to the characters whom he meets that shape whom he becomes. Mickey is a flawed, but likeable–even lovable–character, because he represents characteristics that many of us possess. We can see ourselves in Mickey.
Alle Wells’ storytelling technique has us rooting for Mickey and Marianne even though we know others in the story will get hurt. Her skillful use of dialogue, told through the main character Mickey, and the historical depictions of scenes and locales draw the reader into the story and make you feel as if you are living these private, intimate moments right along with Mickey. Railroad Man reads like a memoir, but at its essence, it is a love story.
A Great Read!