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Nick: The Journey of a Lifetime by Christine…

Nick: The Journey of a Lifetime (edition 2012)

by Christine Schimpf

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422,355,249 (3.25)None
Title:Nick: The Journey of a Lifetime
Authors:Christine Schimpf
Info:CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (2012), Paperback, 226 pages
Collections:Your library

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Nick: The Journey of a Lifetime by Christine Schimpf



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A slight variation on my standard disclaimer applies to this review. The author contacted me directly requesting a review of her novel and provided it free of charge. Despite this generous consideration on her part I will provide my honest feedback.

Weighing in at three hours total reading time this book is really more of a novella. In its 212 pages it gives us an insight into the life of a simple immigrant carpenter as he makes his way to America to seek his fortune with a growing family. Schimpf's offering is written in a very simple and straightforward manner that is easily accessible and easily consumed at one sitting.

Unfortunately, this easy accessibility seems to come at a cost. The events portrayed lack depth and detail and one suffers a bit from reader's whiplash. Children appear in the family and we are forced to wonder about their ages for quite some time. Events which one might expect to be dramatic turn out to be without consequence and for the most part there is no real sense of drama. For a narrative covering such temporal and geographic distance the landscape seems rather flat.

Topically, this book reminds me strongly of "The Shoemaker's Wife." It too tells the story of a similar, though more dramatic immigrant journey, and its endearing quality is its lavish attention to details. Sadly, Nick's story is at the opposing end of the same spectrum. We are given far too few details and we're never allowed to be properly tantalized. Schimpf's protagonist seems taciturn and at times unlikable and one is not sure whether to cheer for him or merely accept what seems to be a fairly easy success.

In summary, "The Journey of a Lifetime" has at its heart a good story but it is merely a thumbnail sketch. It suffices for a family history told at the dinner table to children but does not stand well on its own as a novel intended for the more literate masses. ( )
  slavenrm | Mar 28, 2013 |
Nick, The Journey of a Lifetime by Christine Schimpf

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is not my typical read. However I did enjoy learning from the Author's husband's family stories how it really was in Europe during WWII.

This book highlights changing points in the lives of her husbands family, how Nick and Theresa came to marry after Theresa was supposed to go into an arranged marriage that her step father had set up. The hardships and moves that they had to make their journey through life and to keep their family together when the Partisan's attacked as well as Nicks stints in the army. Their growing family as well as keeping Nicks parents taken care of. In Europe they travel from one area to the next until finally they get a break and can come over seas to America the land of Opportunity. You can see how the family roles change over time in the decision making process of each move and each new opportunity handed to them as well as the hardships they endure. However, they are a close knit family and keep everyone together throughout.

A nice quick story about a family their hardships, opportunities, their happy times, and successes all rolled into one book. This book gives you a view from one families eyes of what happened during those times of war in Europe and how our America gave them the opportunity of a lifetime.

View all my reviews ( )
  MonicaLynn | Nov 8, 2012 |
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"NICK, The Journey of a Lifetime, not only is a well thought out book, but it is packed full of action, adventure and excitement which gives the reader a fascinating perspective of the Danube Swabian people and the plight they endured.

As the pages turn one not only gets to know the courageous Nick but also feels as if they are right there next to him with every twist and turn. From the first page on, CHRISTINE SCHIMPF engages the reader with the life events of Nick and Theresa. She tells the story of Nick with simple charm under unimaginable circumstances that is highly engaging."

added by Christine_Schimpf | editGerman-American Journal, Darlene Fuchs
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To the love of my life, Ernie
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The music inside the gasthaus thumped strongly and mingled with the chatter, laughter, and gaiety from within. Nick moved quickly down the cobblestone street toward the gates that would let him in. He was young, strong, and confident. Working as an apprentice allowed the coins in his pocket to jingle. He felt good. He earned this.
"We start where we began."
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Meet Nick and Theresa, a couple in love and in trouble. Together they will learn how to fight the odds and reach their dreams. Set in 1920s Europe, this epic will keep you wondering "what will happen next?" Inspired by true events, the meaning of love, family, and honor ground this true story that appeals to all ages.
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