If you are the sort of person who prefers one sentence reviews, I will put it like this: I loved this book.

The best way I know to describe FOURTH AND FOREVER is to say that it is a fictional memoir, laced with parables, structured like a fable.  It is from time to time matter-of-fact, poetic, philosophical, funny and always down to earth.  Bert Carson writes in understated prose, conversational and unassuming.  But in his almost casual tone, he plunges us into the horror of war, the tragedy of lost love, the trauma of PTSD for Vietnam Vets.  Yet, he brings us love stories, between a man and woman, a father and son, a boy and his dog, among players and coaches on a college football team.

FOURTH AND FOREVER exudes a quiet dignity, a serenity drawn from living life in the present.

These days, I read a lot of books by indie authors, authors not under the tent of major publishers.  These writers are the entrepreneur artists of the twenty-first century. However, many of them are in rush to say things, to get some words on paper.  Others of them, like Bert Carson, have something timeless to say.  Stories like FOURTH AND FOREVER will never become obsolete.  So long as people summon their resolve, move forward in the face of events that threaten to stop them in their tracks, relegate the past to the past and inhale hope for the future, they will want to read books like this one, books of encouragement sans sugar-coated sentimentality.

There are no vampires, werewolves or dragons in FOURTH AND FOREVER. And the only ghosts are the ones we all live with, ghosts of friends and loved ones who died too young or the Siren specters of our own former selves who seek to wreck us among the rocks if we will but stray off course for a moment or a year or a decade.

Call me old-fashioned if you will, but I like it when the good guys win. In FOURTH AND FOREVER, Bert Carson has written a winner, an undefeated national champion.

If there is a category above HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, that’s where this one belongs.


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