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review 2020-08-31 06:37
The general who built an army
George C. Marshall: Ordeal and Hope: 1939-1942 - Forrest C. Pogue

As the fifteenth Chief of Staff of the United States Army, George Catlett Marshall oversaw the transformation of the United States Army from a modest constabulary into an organization capable of waging war on a truly global scale. Though such a metamorphosis was due to the efforts of thousands of people working over the course of many years, as Forrest Pogue demonstrates in the second volume of his biography of the general and statesman Marshall’s contribution was key to the development of the Army into a force that would play a vital role in defeating the Axis powers and establishing the United states as a global superpower.

 

This was no small achievement, nor was it an easy one. As Pogue notes, Marshall would regard his two years of service as Chief of Staff as the most difficult of his tenure, far more so than the four years he spent in the post during the war itself. Much of this had to do with the dimensions of the task before him. When Marshall took up the post in September 1939, the Army was both under-funded and under-strength, limited by postwar disillusionment and financial constraints. Nor did the outbreak of war in Europe suddenly change everyone’s thinking. As late as April 1940, members of Congress questioned the need to expand the ground forces, believing that the low-intensity “phony war” that developed after the fall of Poland was easily avoidable. Only after their invasion of Denmark and Norway made German intentions clear did Congressional opposition to spending for a larger force finally evaporate.

 

Yet Marshall gained his money at the expense of time. In short order he was expected to develop a fighting force capable of deterring or defeating any German threat. Nor did the now-expanded budget solve the Army’s problems, as Marshall had to cope with the competing need to support the British in their ongoing war against Germany for weapons production. Even more problematic was the widespread reluctance of many Americans to serve in the rapidly-expanding Army for one moment longer than they were required to by the draft, a sentiment to which many powerful politicians were sensitive. So how did Marshall surmount these challenges?

 

Pogue makes it clear that foremost among Marshall’s attributes was a Herculean work ethic, as he dedicated nearly every day to the duties of his office. To the task he also brought considerable diplomatic skill and a sensitivity to the limits of what was possible, enabling him to navigate skillfully the formidable politics that were part of his job. Finally, there was his eye for talent, as he had an extraordinary ability to identify men of ability and a determination to place them in the posts where they could make the best use of their skills. Often this meant promoting them over older men of longer service, many of whom Marshall knew personally. That Marshall was willing to turn friends into enemies in order to prepare the Army for what lay ahead is perhaps the best evidence of his determination to succeed in his mission.

 

These efforts, though, were outpaced by events. Pogue spends a considerable amount of space detailing Marshall’s role in the events leading up to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, with the goal of rebutting the claims that he was part of a conspiracy to bring the United States into the war. Nevertheless, Pogue acknowledges the limits of Marshall’s conceptualization of the Japanese threat, noting that he overestimated the Army’s Hawai’ian defenses and underestimated the ability of the Japanese to attack him. The months that followed were especially tragic, as Marshall watched with despair as the Army units stationed in the Philippines were defeated by the Japanese. Yet this did not deflect him from his commitment to the “Germany first” focus adopted before the war, as he worked strenuously to launch a second front in France as early as 1942. Though Marshall was frustrated in this by the British (whom, as Pogue notes, would have borne the brunt of such an early effort), by the end of America’s first year of the war he could look with hope to the victories he knew would soon come.

 

Benefiting from interviews with Marshall and his contemporaries as well as considerable archival research, Pogue’s book serves as an effective monument to his subject and his achievements as Chief of Staff. Though focused on detail, it provides more analysis of its subject than Pogue’s previous volume, Education of a General, which helps to explain Marshall’s motivations and the thinking underlying them. While further analysis would have made for an even better book, given Pogue’s proximity to many of the key figures he describes he may have felt a little too constrained to offer the sort of judgments the facts he describes seem to demand, Nonetheless, his book is a valuable resource on both Marshall and his achievements, one that will likely remain required reading on the general for many years to come.

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text 2020-07-02 16:01
9 Things Your Parents Taught You About bts bt21 characters

There are plenty of instances in which BTS people display up in the exact same play. How will you cope with this case? By way of example, are there any variations amongst The 2 groups? So as to talk about this challenge, let us Check out how the theater operates.

In most cases, the Theater Company would be the entity that is certainly answerable for coming up with the sets and props. The idea is quite easy. There is a group of actors, normally performers, who connect with one another.

The human component from the interaction involving actors is what contributes to the thought of a Perform, so we can easily now realize why actors generally Participate in on their own. So that you can get from the main scene to the ultimate scene, all the actors ought to connect with one another.

A Participate in is always divided into scenes. But, with both of those actors playing by themselves, you will generally have multiple actor inside the scene. Also, in most performs, there'll be various groupings of characters at distinct points during the Perform.

Using this facts, we are able to see why we see BTS characters in a similar plays. When actors Enjoy on their own, it is straightforward to check out why They can be identified as BTS people. All of them possess the exact personality. And, given that they all show up in exactly the same Enjoy, It is far from tricky to tell them aside.

Even so, You can find yet another way to differentiate The 2 groups. Now, when actors Enjoy themselves, they are still acting. This is certainly called acting "out" the character.

We see this While using the Grand Valet, who will likely be performed by an actor who may have no understanding of the team. Due to the fact they are acting out the character, they do not know their strains. They occur out and in of the scene as the drama unfolds.

The distinction between acting "out" and acting "in" the character is The author's capability to describe their persona. In case the Enjoy has a unique framework, the opposite actors may well act "in" their roles, but they often should execute using a fundamental understanding of the character.

Despite the fact that BTS characters show up in precisely the same plays, they also vary from a person Perform to the subsequent. We saw the Grand Valet in the final Participate in, and he was extremely amusing. The writer produced it clear that he was very silly, but he did have a very good humorousness.

How does a playwright figure out if a BTS character is funny or not? They bt21 characters have to be intelligent enough to figure out whether they may make the character funny. Due to this, you regularly see that BTS people are certainly intelligent.

From time to time, when they're introduced, the audience may not recognize them right away, but We all know them as BTS figures simply because we have observed them right before. Some writers discover humor in The truth that we know them already.

Eventually, They are really two teams that interact. Because of this the writer has to elucidate to the actors what is going on. Both teams have to operate together.

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review 2020-06-16 11:27
Will leave you with a smile
The Lake Never Tells - Alex Tully

I write this review as a member of Rosie’s Book Review Team, and I freely chose to review an ARC copy of this novel.

This is the first of Tully’s books I’ve read, although it is the third novel she has published, and in the ‘About the author’ section of her page and her books she describes her stories as ‘feel good’ stories, and she states that she hopes ‘readers will smile after turning the last page’. Well, hope accomplished, as far as I’m concerned.

The book description provides enough clues as to the general plot of the story. This is the story of a summer that changed the lives of the young characters at the centre of the story. Two of them, Zoe and Parker, live in a trailer park at the shore of a lake, just a stone’s throw from a posh resort ‘Crystal Waters’. They both have unconventional families (Parker lost his mother in tragic circumstances, never met his father, and lives with his grandmother, who is the strict but fair and wonderful Shirley; while Zoe lives with her single Mom, Debbie, who refuses to take responsibility for anybody, even herself, and acts much younger than her years). Zoe’s best friend, Meredith, the daughter of the local sheriff, can be pushy and harsh at times, but she is also funny and amusing, and always has Zoe’s back. Ethan, a young boy from the posh side of the divide who has come for the summer, somewhat stumbles into their group dragging his own problems with him. Although his life and circumstances might seem charmed from the outside, his parents’ relationship is a sham, and he suffered a traumatic event one year ago that he has not fully recovered from. It has changed him and turned him into somebody quite different. As the novel advances, we come to realise that Ethan’s change might have been for the better, even if that is not so evident for him at the beginning of the story. The novel fits well into the YA genre, and although the characters are put to the test and have to confront some harsh truths about themselves and others, these are not extreme, brutal or too challenging, and I think the book would be suited to fairly young teens as well, although I’d recommend parents to check it out because there are mentions of drugs, mental health difficulties, a suspicious death, a suggestion of sexual harassment, as well as divorce and drinking.

I liked the way the story is told. It starts with a hook, as we follow Parker on the 5th of July when he makes a shocking discovery, and then we go back a few weeks, to learn more about the characters and how they came to this point. The story is told in the third person, but from the points of view of the three main protagonists, Zoe, Parker, and Ethan, and their emotions and thoughts feel suitable to their ages (Parker is only 11, and he behaves appropriately to his age) and to their circumstances. I also liked the way we get and insight into Ethan’s disturbing thoughts and the way he tries to deal with them. We don’t learn what happened to him until quite late in the story, but by that time we’ve got to know him as he is now, and we can empathise with him even more. The way he and Zoe behave with Parker, as if he were their younger brother, is heart-warming.

I liked Zoe, because she is strong and determined, and I liked the way Meredith can be annoying but also amusing and supportive, and she usually helps lighten up the atmosphere. Shirley is a great character, although like all the adult characters, she does not play as big a part in the story as the young people.

The element of mystery is well resolved and integrated into the story, and I particularly enjoyed the fact that this is not a story of amateur detectives that can find answers and clues the police have missed, pushing the suspension of disbelief, but one where the characters are involved in the story because this is a small community and people’s lives become easily entangled. I also enjoyed the red herrings, twists, and revelations, and the resolution of the plot is very satisfying and hopeful.

The writing is simple and straight forward, without unnecessarily lengthy descriptions, but the author still manages to create a good sense of place and, especially, of the feeling of friendship and affection between the protagonists.

I cannot highlight any major negatives for me. Readers who are looking for diverse characters might not find them here (there are major differences in social class, and this is something the book focuses on, and one of the characters suffers from mental health issues, but no issues of genre, or race are discussed), and although I enjoyed the ending, the fact that the author decides to share the same scene from the point of view of the three main characters in succession results in some minor unavoidable repetitions. This slows down the ending a bit, but it wasn’t something that bothered me in particular. Each chapter is told from a single point of view (apart from the final one), and it is clearly labelled, so that does not cause confusion. I also missed some more interaction between Ethan and his twin sister, who hardly makes an appearance during the book. Ethan thinks about her at times, but she does not have a presence, and she is the only one of the younger characters I didn’t feel I had got to know. Even Heather, one of the cabana girls working with Zoe, has a bigger part than her. Other than that, the book flows well and is fairly cohesive, although the action speeds up towards the end, as is usually the case with mysteries.

I recommend this book to people who enjoy YA fiction, especially, as the author says, ‘feel-good’ fiction, where some important subjects are discussed but in a sensitive rather than a challenging manner. It is an ode to friendship and hope, and it feels particularly suited to the times we’re living. And it will leave readers with a smile. 

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review 2020-06-15 16:45
The Perfect Hope
The Perfect Hope - Nora Roberts

Ehhh not too much to say. I loved Hope and loathed Ryder. I am glad for the most part that Roberts latest contemporary romances do not have the whole alpha male who is an asshole, but secretly has a heart of gold thing. Most of the crap Ryder did to Hope was "negging" in the first two books (he refuses to use her name and calls her innkeeper) and I thought too many people kept giving him passes. The only reason why I gave this three stars was that Hope was great, that the trilogy seems to take place over a two year period, and it was nice to read a romance that didn't take place in New York. I think Roberts skipped past some really good sub-plots in order to get back to the "investigation" into Lizzy which I still didn't care about.

 

"The Perfect Hope" finds the Inn Boonsboro ready for the summer. Clare is married and expecting, Avery is engaged to get married the following year, and now Hope feels a bit lost. She was left hurt by the end of her last relationship and realizing that the man she was with, didn't love her, and his family really didn't care about her at all. When her friends propose Ryder (why you guys? Are there no other men) Hope considers it and then proposes a "situation with no strings" with Ryder. 

 

I just have to say this, Hope was too good for Ryder. I really wish that Roberts had some tension develop with her realizing that Ryder was set in his ways and wasn't opening himself up to her. The way he talked to her in this book and the last two books really set my teeth on edge. And I hated that Hope's supposed friends made it seem like well maybe he has a thing for you. Nope. Nope. Nope. 

 

Ryder doesn't change at all (IMHO) he just stays the same and then goes around and does the He-Man crap when a situation comes up involving Hope. I just wasn't feeling him at all since it didn't seem to me he was in love with Hope at all. The story put them together, but I wasn't seeing true love through the ages. 

The resolution to the whole ghost thing was eyeroll inducing. I went really a few times and just didn't care. I think for me that the series was just a platform to showcase Roberts new business and I wish that there had been more development of the last two romances in the series. I loved Clare and Beckett, loved Avery and felt meh about Owen, and then loved Hope and loathed Ryder. 

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text 2020-06-14 14:03
Reading progress update: I've read 30%.
The Perfect Hope - Nora Roberts

Good grief books two and three and tedious. 

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