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on Feb. 23, 2012 :
As a reader of books of many styles, I like to expand my horizons beyond the same old, which for me is usually science fiction, or some trade manual publication, and I never really expect to have a personal bond with a book.
That said, The Goodbye Man is one of the most unusual, and entertaining stories I have ever read.
Instead of the explosions, and warring aliens, I settled in for a good read about my new friend Linda Brown. What I was surprised to find, was that she had been through so many of the same events in her life that I had, in my younger days.
However, it was the events at home that had me crying, laughing, and feeling a range of emotions I couldnt begin to describe except that I bonded with Linda's family that day.
I especially bonded with her father, and feel his presence when I swim in my nearby natural spring. I know he is there with me, swimming effortlessly across the pond, weightless.
I also felt bonded with the characters in her life, and felt that they were ALL instrumental in her father's continued success. As the book goes on the reader is treated to a few riddles or so, and at the end the reward is evident.
Additionally, anybody interested in TT Brown's work, will be able to glean a massive amount of understanding about the man and his life, from this book.
If you have ever had any wonder as to the behind the scenes day to day life of a world reknowned scientist, and his family life, this is a must read!
Well written, well researched,and well lived!
Sincerely, David Goshorn
(reviewed within a week of purchase)
on May 02, 2011 :
Thomas Townsend Brown is the title character of this eminently readable short memoir, penned by his daughter, Linda. Brown was a world class physicist (perhaps most well known for his alleged connection to “the Philadelphia Experiment”) who led a double, or even triple life as a family man, a mild mannered scientist/inventor, and an intelligence agent for a number of American's most secretive 3-letter agencies. Although he tried to maintain some semblance of a normal home life, his peripatetic career often took him away from his small family, sometimes for extended periods of time. And thus the title.
But this is not a story about "Doc Brown." Rather, it is built largely upon the memories and notebooks of his daughter who at one time had served as her father's research assistant, his private secretary and as the archivist of his life and work. Ms. Brown's touching and intimate recollections wend their way from a toddler's earliest memories in the then remote wilds of post-war Hawaii, through her hectic teen years and her early marriage, to this current effort to tell her own, unique story. Along the way we meet her gentle and perceptive mother, her teenage heartthrob, J.D. Garrett, who actually achieves his life-long ambition to become a modern James Bond, her husband, George, an individual coping with things far out of his ken, and a string of characters ranging from flamboyant girlfriends to prominent Generals to well known scientists to high-powered industrialists and covert operatives serving in several of the same clandestine agencies that employed her father. And of course we get to know some of the inner workings and day to day charm, gentility, wit, wisdom and foibles of her genius father.
Those who want inside details about Townsend's Brown's secret research will be disappointed in this book. However, those looking for a well written, heartfelt story should certainly enjoy it.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)