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Say Not What If by Andrew Friedman

Say Not What If

by Andrew Friedman

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This is a very thought-provoking book that makes one realize the gravity of what each action may have on the future. Just because we get into such desperate times does not mean that we shouldn't acknowledge the repercussions of our actions. As the author says, live your life now because the future is not guaranteed. ( )
  sealford | Apr 10, 2012 |
This is about a 51 page book about a guy that spent all his time devoted to work. When he looses his wife to work and becomes ill he realizes what he lost. Trying to make things better, he talks to the gods of Fate and learns that the only option to getting his health back is a horrible act, which he does.

This lands him in prison where he is treated horribly but makes something of himself. But during the time he is changing his life for the better, his sentence is almost over and he is once again realizing what he is about to lose.

I understand what the author is trying to get across. We should try to help others and not waste time that could be spent one important things and people. The rhyme did flow well throughout the story.

I do have to say that the price the gods of Fate ask for and him providing it really turned me off the story. I honestly had a hard time feeling anything for the character or even wanting to continue reading.

This is a quick read and has a good message. I am sorry to say that I couldn’t find it in myself to rise above the anger I felt and try to think better about the character and what he goes through. I am going to give this story a neutral review because of that.

I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  jbronderblogs | Jan 3, 2012 |
Say Not What If is a poetic novel from the perspective of a man on death row looking back over his life.

This story kind of hit home for me, and I really understand on a personal level the inconsistencies in sentencing, the preferential treatment given to some and not others, the risks of executing an innocent person, at least "innocent" in regards to what they are being sentenced death for-- killing another human being-- if not innocent of other crimes.

This was an interesting way to relay an idea-- as an almost 10,000 word poem. Well-written and engaging the mind, it gets you thinking and asking yourself questions on the subject of the death penalty, however not as much as I would hope. The villain is very "villainous", not eliciting too much sympathy. There is no question that he committed his crime, and it was a truly heinous crime involving a small child. Many who read his story will feel he got exactly what he deserved.

Some of the biggest debates of the death penalty are those over the "unfairness" of it all-- the fact that poor black men are more likely to be sentenced to death than affluent white. The most frightening debate is over whether it should be allowed if there is any chance of an innocent being executed. This story won't really incite too many of those types of conversations.

At only 52 pages long, it is a pretty quick read. I'd recommend this to anyone interested in the death penalty debate. ( )
  nfmgirl2 | Dec 22, 2011 |

Say Not What If by Andrew Friedman is a 51 page short story in the format of a rhythmic poem. It is narrated by a man who is on death row for murder, and describes his work-a-holic lifestyle, his crime, his sentencing, and his remaining life in prison.


I have always been interested in the different formats that writers use to convey their thoughts; so when I read about Andrew Friedman's short story, Say Not What If, I was ready to read something out of the ordinary. The paperback I received didn't disappoint!

After page one I was hooked. The rhyming scheme was excited and bouncy, yet the actual subject matter was gritty, full of despair and hopelessness. I thought this stark contrast really helped with the poem's rhythmic flow. I found myself reading, (in my head and out loud), at an energetic pace, almost like lyrics to a song, waiting to find out what would happen next. I don't know how Andrew Friedman managed to keep the rhyming scheme consistent, but it was nearly perfect and very easy to read and understand. I actually read it a second time just because I liked the flow of the poem as a whole.

I recommend this poetic short story to anyone who wants to read something different, likes a little rhyme, or those who find it's contents intriguing.

Rating: On the Run (4/5)

***I received a copy of Say Not What If from author Andrew Friedman. ( )
  Allizabeth | Oct 9, 2011 |
When Andrew Friedman approached me to review his book, 'Say Not What If', I was immediately interested. His little story of 51 pages, is written as one long rhyming poem. That seemed to me a daunting task and I was curious to see if he could really have pulled it off.
Let's start with a bit about the story. (The plan was to write this part in rhyme out of deference to the book but I'm not that good) The book is narrated by a man who spent the majority of his life as a workaholic. He lost his family to his job and then his life really spiralled out of control! It only takes till the second page to find out he is now on death row and will be executed in the morning. The poem goes on to explain what happened to bring him to this point.

All right; the big question: Did Andrew Friedman pull it off? I'm going to give that a qualified yes.

Yes: The poetry is consistent. It rhymes and has good rhythm and flow and it tells the story. The story is fairly complex and I only got lost once. I misread a stanza and ended up with the wrong name for one of the characters which messed me up for a second. But a quick flip back solved my problem. This is nothing that I haven't had to do with conventional books so I don't count it as a negative.

Qualified: I didn't think the crime was dealt with well or completely explained. The motivation seemed contrived. The story itself was powerful and touched me. I was surprised at how completely I was drawn in. The style of poetry, though, contrasted in style to the solemnity of the story. I felt like the poet was being flippant with a serious subject. This may not be a negative, however, as it gives the book a greater range of appeal. Readers who are not poetry aficionados will still find the story accessible and readable.

If you are looking for a quick read and an unconventional set up you could do a lot worse than 'Say Not What If'. ( )
  DanaBurgess | Oct 7, 2011 |
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