Georgiana, Maisie, and Amory: Detectives All, Part 2

SPOILER ALERT! Sometime ago I introduced the readers of this blog to three of my favorite mystery authors:  Jacqueline Winspear, Rhys Bowen, and a librarian turned author, Ashley Weaver (the first two authors are native Brits who live  in the  United States). All three have women as their main characters.  Winspear's Masie Dobbs started out in … Continue reading Georgiana, Maisie, and Amory: Detectives All, Part 2

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

I made my first trip to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in 1975 when I was in graduate school at UTK in Knoxville.  Three years later, forty years ago, our family made our first hiking trip, when we participated in a church sponsored outing, which included a walk up Mount LeConte.   Since then, we've … Continue reading Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Murder in Strange Places

When I am not reading non-fiction, I tend to relax with two or three good mysteries.  The past few months I've reading Kerry Greenwood's Phryne Fisher mysteries  set in Australia in the 1920s, and watching the show on PBS.   Deborah Crombie writes a series of books starring a couple of London detective inspectors and their … Continue reading Murder in Strange Places

“I’ve been to the mountaintop!”

Today (April 4, 2018) is the fifty year anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was to lead a march with striking city garbage workers.  The march had originally been scheduled for March 22,1968, but Mother Nature had dumped eighteen inches of snow on the city, so … Continue reading “I’ve been to the mountaintop!”

“Riders on the Storm,” Vietnam, Pt. 4

When Richard Nixon was elected as President of the United States in November 1968, Lyndon Johnson's administration had started talks with representatives of the Communist government of North Vietnam six months before, but when they attempted to get the South Vietnamese and the Viet Cong to join the discussions, the talks broke down.   The Tét … Continue reading “Riders on the Storm,” Vietnam, Pt. 4

“We Gotta Get Out Of This Place,” Vietnam, Part 3

This  is the third blog  in a series about the Vietnam War and focuses on the  consequences of  the Communist Tét Offensive in the spring of 1968.  It is also the fiftieth  anniversary  of the North Vietnamese Army (PAVN)/VC attack that changed the war and influenced the political climate back in the States.    Tét is … Continue reading “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place,” Vietnam, Part 3

“Bad Moon Rising,” Vietnam, Pt. 2

After the French left a divided Vietnam in 1955, the United States government agreed to take over the training of South Vietnam's troops.  The first military advisers found an ill equipped,  poorly trained army with an officer corps that was generally inept.  Advisers were embedded at every level of the ARVN and officers were sent to … Continue reading “Bad Moon Rising,” Vietnam, Pt. 2

“Where Have All the Soldiers Gone?” Part 1

The Vietnam War is difficult to read about if you are interested in the military history  of the conflict because, unlike the Great War, World War II, and Korea, the authors of the survey histories spend more words laying blame among the Washington politicians and military brass than they do talking about the tactical and … Continue reading “Where Have All the Soldiers Gone?” Part 1

Katrina, Ike, Harvey, Irma, Maria, Etc.

  Note:  In addition to books available in the collections of Fontana Regional Library and the NC Cardinal consortium I used articles from databases in NC Live. In recent weeks three category four or five hurricanes devastated multiple Caribbean islands, Puerto Rico,  the Gulf coast of Texas  and the whole state of Florida.  Remnants of … Continue reading Katrina, Ike, Harvey, Irma, Maria, Etc.

Truman vs. MacArthur

On June 25, 1950, the North Korean army streamed across the 38th parallel attacking the poorly equipped Republic of Korea (ROK) soldiers, driving them southward.  With the backing of the United Nations Security Council, President Harry S. Truman ordered General Douglas MacArthur to send  members of the 8th United States army, then on occupation duty … Continue reading Truman vs. MacArthur