Note: The following review was published in The Casey County News Arts & Entertainment section on Wednesday, June 18, 2008. They don't currently post the A&E section of the paper on their website, so I took the liberty of reprinting it here in its entirety. I apologize for the self-promotional aspect of doing so, but I'm fighting for mindshare in a world that publishes around 200,000 books each year; WSPWH is - at the risk of sounding boastful - one of the better of those, and, in my mind at least, one of the more important. In addition to the below, you can read another review of WSPWH here as well.
The Book Corner: What So Proudly We Hailed
by guest reviewer Penelope Wesley
Blaine Staat dedicates his newest book, “What So Proudly We Hailed” to all the U.S. servicemen and women who died in defense of our country. They paid the high price for our freedom. He presents a story with a thought-provoking question – “Can freedom cost too much?”
I was “hooked” immediately as tension mounted to the very end. I had to know where the story would take me.
It is a fictitious story, dated in 2027, with subtle truths that awaken the reader to how a government that once served the people becomes a master over them. This slow development moves the people to a point of no turning back. The reader is swept into a wild journey – a nightmare of the future as the main character has a chance to restore liberty to the American people.
Events like the senseless terroristic attacks of the World Trade Center and Pan Am 707 have changed our country forever. We continue to seek and punish those responsible. We have given our government more power and control.
Read how the author weaves this fact and takes it a step further by forming the most powerful agency that can track every detail of our lives. Follow his story of how the events and the advancement of technology bring forth both good and evil. Then ask yourself, “Can this come true?”
Will you agree with the author’s words, “Hindsight is a strange thing; so vividly clear, and yet so utterly worthless”?
Staat emphasizes that this piece of work is solely fictitious, but be prepared as you read of characters with familiar last names – Pierce, Miller, Porter and Weddle – or places like “Gateway Park” or “behind the IGA”. He writes of a little town in Central Kentucky called “Mission Creek”. Could it possibly be our Liberty [KY] in 2027?
For those who enjoy adventure and excitement, this book is a must. There is information on Homeland Security and modern technology that I don’t want to believe to be true. Thanks, Mr. Staat, for your in-depth research that has educated me and stimulated me to want to know more. You have broadened my understanding about the work of government agencies and given me a new appreciation for science fiction.
I have revisited those first pages many times. This is a powerful, thought-provoking story – one that has created a lingering eeriness that will remain with me for a long time.
Editor’s Note: Penelope Wesley is a member of the non-fiction writing group at Carnegie Center in Lexington. She is a volunteer with KET, a member of the KET Literature Task Force, and a KET Book Club panelist.
Copyright © 2008 The Casey County News, Liberty, Kentucky. Used with permission.