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review 2014-11-16 04:02
Another Good Novel by Trollope
Small House at Allington - Anthony Trollope,David Skilton

Lily meets a young man from London. They fall in love quickly and become engaged. But Lily's young man, Crosbie, soon begins to have doubts. The doubts are created by the awareness that Lily's uncle does not intend to give any money to her when she marries. This means that Crosbie will have difficulty supporting a wife. He leaves Lily and goes to visit the Earl of De Courcy's family. In the Earl's mansion lives his daughter, Alexandrina, who is desperate to marry. Lured by the money and fame of the family, Crosbie jilts Lily to marry Alexandrina.


Most of the book follows the lives of Lily and Crosbie with an assortment of minor characters, many who are memorable. One person is Johnny Eames, a young man who has known Lily for years and has fallen in love with her. Will he be successful in his suit? Will Lily get over her heartbreak and consider marrying him in the future?


The most interesting character is Crosbie. He is afraid he will lose his status if he marries Lily. He is afraid he will be poor forever. As soon as he becomes engaged to Alexandrina, he regrets it. However, he can not break off an engagement with an earl's daughter. Crosbie finds that he loses status when he marries Alexandrina and all his money is tied up by the family's financier. He loses almost everything he had hope to gain by marrying into the aristocracy. Crosbie will never be happy because he always thinks, "What if I had..."


I was disappointed in Lily's depiction. Trollope leaves us with an indication that she never marries because she was still in love with Crosbie and is determined to consider herself as a widow forever. Since the books ends about 8 months after she was jilted, there certainly wasn't much time for her to recover from a broken heart. I saw her as a young woman determined to be in love and unwilling to admit she made a mistake in trusting Crosbie. She is stubbornly determined to be "faithful" to him even though they had not married. This seems absurd to me and unrealistic.



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review 2014-11-11 14:21
In Honor of Veterans Day
Always Faithful: A Memoir of the Marine Dogs of WWII - William W. Putney

*Book source ~ A review copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.

Original review was published in Sgt. Grit’s Newsletter, Vol. 2, No. 5, May 2004


Retired Captain William Putney, of the United States Marine Corps, recounts his story of the 3rd Marine War Dog Platoon used in World War II in his memoir Always Faithful. In June 1943, Putney enlisted in the Marine Corps. Fresh out of college with a degree in veterinary medicine, he was hoping to serve his country with honor and courage. It came as a disappointment when his orders sent him to be a line officer in the War Dog Platoon. However, he was soon engrossed in the training of the dogs and handlers for combat in the Pacific.


Putney’s writing flows easily carrying the reader along on his journey as he describes the almost seven months of training, the trip to Guadalcanal, and the tension filled, dangerous liberation of the island of Guam. After the war was over he was horrified to learn that the war dogs were being euthanized. No attempt was being made to retrain them for safe return to the civilian owners who donated them. He spearheaded the effort to establish a detraining program of the courageous dogs serving our country with courage and distinction. His efforts paid off when the Marine Corps established the war dog detraining program. The program was a huge success and out of 559 Marine Corps dogs, only 19 had to be euthanized (15 due to health reasons and only four were considered too incorrigible for civilian life). Putney paints the reader a clear picture of what the training, the dogs and their handlers, and war was like. It is at times humorous and horrifying without bogging us down in military slang incomprehensible to the non-military reader. This memoir is a wonderful story for the history buff, military buff, and dog lover.

Source: imavoraciousreader.blogspot.com/2014/11/in-honor-of-veterans-day-always-faithful.html
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