December 4, 2019
Saving Papa’s Tales by Richard Ebner is an extremely strong example of good memoir writing. His story of a father son relationship that includes conversations about their past history and events of the present times – including the papa’s marriage to a much younger woman who abuses him, his attempts to prove his papa is not demented and shouldn’t be in a nursing home, and his final days with his papa before his death – has all the qualities of memoir: storytelling, dialogue, character development, descriptions, and as Ebner urges his papa to include when he is telling his life stories “details, details, details.”
Even though author Richard Ebner tells you at the start of the book that it is optional to read Chapter 34, I urge you to read it. This is the author’s chapter (sonny’s chapter, Ebner calls it) where he writes his coming of age story.
Saving Papa’s Tales never failed to keep me turning the pages. It certainly deserves five stars
November 24, 2019
Format: Kindle Edition
I received a paperback copy of this book about two months ago. I meant to start immediately, however I had a book I needed to finish for my book club first. The book from book club was a drag - I had zero interest in the characters. Coming off a bad book, I looked at the book next to my bed (Saving Papa’s Tales) and decided I would give it a try - with very little expectation from this new author.
I COULDN’T PUT IT DOWN!!!
I went to bed early just so I could find out what would happen next. My grandmother had Alzheimer’s, so I could relate to the visits in nursing homes - the smells, confusion, and emotions.
Lastly, this would be an excellent movie! You could also add that to your list of titles you’ve held, Richard!.
August 19, 2019
This beautifully written memoir addresses issues of family dysfunction, while gaining an understanding of it’s roots. The author revealed his own character flaws while modeling the perseverance required in coming to terms with his own vulnerability and growing to accept, love and support a formerly resented parent. I don’t know that I would have had the constitution that Mr. Ebner displayed in carrying through with the situations life had presented to him. In an honest voice, that I could almost hear as I read his words, Mr. Ebner exuded thoughtfulness, kindness, and humor even when he shared with the reader his moments of joy along with frustrations, disappointments and resentments. I found his poetic metaphors in describing a scenario captivating. Mr. Ebner’s style of writing made me feel as if he was sitting in the room sharing his personal story with me. I couldn’t put the book down and I trust others will feel the same way. I have never read anything by this author before, and I look forward to reading more books by Richard Ebner.
I loved how Richard and papa grow together through the book. The struggle with Donna provides what would be in fiction dynamic tension but because it is a true life memoir you don't know how it comes out.
Everyone is portrayed in full depth, as very relate-able people with their good and bad points there to see.
A very lovely read indeed
A well-written book that is difficult to put down once you begin to read it. The story of a dysfunctional, mid-20th-century family told through the eyes of the youngest son. The family never achieves a harmonious existence, but in the end there is understanding, forgiveness and shared love.
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful writing -Interesting life
August 19, 2019
I totally enjoyed this book in part because I liked the style of writing, with a lot of conversations that sounded real. The author's life went through lots of downs, then a great up, and his view of the world matures as you follow the course of his life. The people become personalities that you get to know well. Mr Ebner's story is compelling and you like him as he fights, endures, loves and gets to the age where he can look back with wisdom. So well written.
5.0 out of 5 stars A story that asks important questions...
August 29, 2019
I was drawn to this story because of the deep, ethical questions it asks about how we care for our elderly loved ones, and how our culture treats its oldest and most vulnerable members. This is a story about doing what's right and about forgiveness. It really touched my heart and I won't forget about it.
5.0 out of 5 stars Page Turner with Heart
August 18, 2019
Complex family dynamics unfold into a triumph between generations. Witnessing the relationship between Richard and Papa change and grow was very powerful and draws you in where you do not want to take a break from the book. And everyone needs a dog like Baby!
Jacqueline A. Cassiday
5.0 out of 5 stars Aging with humor and humility
August 17, 2019
In a memoir that reads more like a novel, Ebner reconciles the challenges of aging with the humility that unfolds, as he approaches mid-life while his elderly father battles dementia. This story touches not just animal lovers but anyone who has ever faced the daunting task of helping a loved one with dementia. Wrought with sardonic humor, Saving Papa's Tales is as much a story about father and son conspiring to find beauty in the darkness of the realities of life, as it is about the forgiveness that all family relationships ultimately demand from those seeking to find grace and meaning after their forties.
5.0 out of 5 stars A book to take a chance on!
August 16, 2019
I gave this book a chance and I'm so glad I did! It captures so much the grief of family complications and time while letting the reader not get too bogged down. A lovely read with some soul.
August 25, 2019
A wonderfully written story which one facing these issues identifies with completely. Mr Ebner tells of trials and tribulations (papa’s and his own) with such love and honesty. I found it hard to put down.
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