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Also in the
American Teachers Series
by T. Lloyd Winetsky
Book I in the American Teachers Series
A series with backstories that reveal bitter cynicism
and uplifting idealism in American education.
Praise for Grey Pine
Amidst the ashes, Phillip really wants to live and thrive and as I read deeper into the book,
I couldn't help but cheer him on. The story is told from the "inner" voice of the main character.
As I read the first fifty pages, I wondered if I could keep up with the intensity of his voice, yet
the more I read, the more I liked his character and wanted him to succeed in realizing himself.
This book was a great read.
~ Jillian A. Ross
I liked Grey Pine very, very much, though it wasn't what I expected. I thought it would
be more about the Mt. Helen's event and science. The character of Philip was a complete surprise,
but over shorts spells of returning to the book I stuck with him, and eventually could imagine
what it would be like to be facing the volcanic eruption at the same time my life was falling to
pieces. I applaud the novel's deep psychology. It illustrates how our moods are effected in
different ways by a natural disaster. The ash was a wonderful metaphor for the elusive load we
carry in our psyches when personal catastrophes have occurred. Philip keeps shoveling, but he has
more difficulty shoveling his own burdens from his life. I also like the way Winetsky gently
handled Philip's recovery. There were no big promises, but enough sunlight, and the introduction
of a wonderful older character who becomes his friend. Also, the role of the cat Ali is brilliant.
It keeps the reader in touch with Philip's inner man (not the one who used cuss words all the time
and was angrily talking to Stephen, but the person we want badly to survive. Thank you, Terry Winetsky.
I found your story encouraging.
~ Karen Dahood, author of Sophie Redesigned
Phillip didn't have the picture perfect childhood. His father is in love with the bottle and his
mom passed away. When Mount Saint Helen erupts, Philips first thought is to learn everything he
can about this massive outburst as he can. The disaster hits home and from that point on he finds
himself in situations he never could have fathomed.
Phillip is one of those characters that feels oh-so-real. He's the type of person that you can
relate to and one who you can't help but like right off the bat. I give this book two thumbs up!
~ Bridget Hopper
Grey Pine tells the story of Phillip, a young man with an alcoholic father and a mother who died
of cancer. The story starts with the Mount Saint Helens eruption and resultant ash fall around
the surrounding areas. If you've ever been through the aftermath of a natural disaster, Phillip's
account of cleaning up his yard and home will bring those feelings back. I was reminded of the
evacuations and devastation left behind after Hurricans Rita and Ike here in Southeast Texas.
The ash left behind after the volcano eruption reminded me of the scenery in Cormac McCarthy's The
Road. Along with the natural disaster, Phillip is dealing with severe personal problems, namely
depression. Grey Pine is very well executed. I found myself compelled to keep reading, even though
the book made me sad at times.
Grey Pine is a book that will make you think. It made me think about people's prejudices, the
differences in medicine now and thirty years ago, parent-child relationships, addiction, and domestic
violence. I don't usually read this kind of book (I'm more into escapism reading), but I enjoyed
Grey Pine. It reminded me a lot of The Road, in a good way.
Visit my book blog for more of my reviews: Kelli of I'd So Rather Be Reading
My journey through Grey Pine with Phillip, a struggling young science teacher, was
unsettling at times, but hugely rewarding. Winetsky has very effectively interwoven the
darkness of mind and spirit that Phillip battles, with Nature's devastation following the
eruption of Mount Saint Helens. The entire landscape is deeply covered in fine ash, and
the sky never seems to clear. In this murky setting, Phillip is pummeled by life with an
alcoholic and verbally abusive father, lost opportunities, and failing relationships. At
times my frustration with his inability to move on—to make positive decisions—was
strong, but Phillip does battle through—he finds the strength he needs within himself.
This was a fine read.
~ Kathryn Long
A story that is well told and a character that is quite compelling and an author that
teaches us those obstacles can be overcome if we want to overcome them or we can get
stuck in our own private vacuum.
~ Fran Lewis in Just Reviews/MJ Magazine
T. Lloyd Winetsky grew up in Los Angeles and has taught ESL and Bilingual Education to students
of all ages in the Southwest and Northwest. Now retired from full-time teaching, Terry is
currently a part-time ESL instructor for adult farm workers. Marķa Juana's Gift is the author's
second novel. His first, Grey Pine (2007), is a psychological-historical novel set during the
ash fall from Mount St. Helens in 1980. His third novel, also historical fiction, is Los Angeles,
1968: Happy Ranch to Watts, published in 2014—it takes place in a South-Central Los Angeles school
during the volatile spring of 1968. A fourth novel, Belagana-Belazana, is planned for release in
2016. It takes place in the Navajo Nation, where Winetsky and his spouse, Kathleen, taught for
several years. Pen-L Publishing will release Belagana-Belazana plus new editions of the first
three books in Winetsky's "American Teachers" series. Terry and Kathleen live in the Yakima Valley
of Central Washington.
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