J. Norman Reid of Wood News Online reviewed Roy Underhill’s “Calvin Cobb: Radio Woodworker! – A Novel with Measured Drawings” for the most recent issue. Here’s a short excerpt:
“Fun, fast-moving and filled with vivid though sometimes arcane period details about farm machinery, computing and radio equipment, government agencies and cat faces staring out from marble walls, Roy creates unique and engaging characters whose fate propels the reader’s interest from one chapter to the next. Yet despite the heavy overlay of humor that pervades the story line and many of its details, the novel also bears a valuable social message as Calvin confronts the racism and anti-Semitism of the day.
“The ending, which I won’t reveal here, is both dramatic and—like the rest of the book—absurdly humorous. A wild ride indeed!”
You can read the full review here. The entire November 2014 issue of Wood News Online can be read here.
— Megan Fitzpatrick
p.s. Order before Nov. 29, 2014, for free domestic shipping; the book will start shipping on or around Nov. 10.
p.p.s. Not to be outdone by Chris (in this, anyway), here’s another short excerpt from the novel to tempt you:
About 48 hours to go.
As I write this, that is my estimate of when I get to pass off the 40,000 words and 500 pictures of the manuscript for “VIRTUOSO: The Tool Cabinet and Workbench of Henry O. Studley” into the custody of Chris Schwarz and Narayan Nayar, who will respectively edit and illustrate it with sumptuous photographs.
It could not come soon enough, as for the past five months (with the major exception of chopping firewood) I have been pretty much All-Studley-All-The-Time, including the past two months of 16-hour days in Studley-ville. Before that it was five years of Some-Studley-Much-Of-The-Time.
And for a scrawny dead guy, old Henry was getting pretty heavy on my neck.
Despite some unavoidable lacunae (look it up, people, it is a fine and honorable word) in the manuscript because of information I simply have not been able to find yet, as I review the book-in-waiting for the last time it is not an outcome with which I am displeased.
Over to you, Chris and Narayan.
— Don Williams
Editor’s note: “VIRTUOSO: The Tool Cabinet and Workbench of Henry O. Studley” will be available in March 2015.