Monday, May 25, 2015

Book Review and Giveaway - Letters to Loretta by Laura Lynn Ashworth



Letters to Loretta from the Radio Shack, A True WWII Teenage Love Story
by Laura Lynn Ashworth


BLURB:

LETTERS TO LORETTA

FROM THE RADIO SHACK, A True WWII Teenage Love Story

Read the rare and recently discovered real time letters between Sal, age 19, and Loretta, age 15, during the final terrifying three years of World War II, 1943-1946.

Both from the Douglas Park neighborhood in Chicago, the two adolescents discuss with humor and candor, the Navy, war, politics, hit music, life back home and their relationship.

Sal nicknamed Slabby for his movie star good looks, deciphers code out of the Navy’s radio shack on a minesweeper in the Pacific.

Loretta monikered Duchess for her aloofness, lives with aunts and her widowed father, while holding day jobs and enjoying an active social life with friends.

Letters to Loretta from the Radio Shack lets you experience World War II, both in battle and on the home front, through the eyes of adolescents in a way that Hollywood has never portrayed.

My Review:

I have always been interested in World War II homefront fiction, and found this nonfiction book -- a collection of letters between two young adults -- fascinating.

Readers will experience the story through real letters, and it is like holding a piece of history.  As a young girl I had penpals and wrote letters to friends and relatives as well, and this book made me nostalgic for the old fashioned exchange of real mail.

I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in World War II history, anyone who likes epistolary books, and anyone who wants a moving and powerful read.  

Excerpt:

January 5, 1943
US Naval Training Station
Farragut, Idaho
1330 So. Washington Ave.
Chicago, IL

Dear Loretta,

Gee, but aren't you thoughtful. By the way, every time I write a letter to you, you seem to be writing a letter back home. Isn't that a co-incidence or isn't it? I received two letters to date, so “keep em flying.”

It was just a month ago that I left and I'll be damned if I know whether it seems like a year or a week. As far as concerning you, it seems like a year. I presume you're still as sharp as a whip, you old prankster. Say, in your next letter send me a couple of pictures of yourself, one of them recently taken and you may charge it to Uncle Sam and his fleet.

So I see your stepping out now, you're really cooking with the right kind of material. Don't forget I've got a date with you when I get back home, which I hope won't be any longer than a year.

Had a lot of fun at the rifle range this week as no doubt Joe will tell you. I still get three square meals a day, and are they square. A slice of bread with plenty of nothing.

This weather we have up here now surely reminds me of Chicago. It’s dingier than a campaign speech and it just knocks the hell out of these Californians out here. They're just used to beautiful women and mild weather, while we in Chicago are used to gales and violent women.

Do you know what? In “Frisco” the taverns close at midnight. Now isn't that a whacky thing to do?

Haven't seen many movies lately except for a few Navy films showing recent battles to get us boiled. But if we don't get our liberty Wednesday, I'll boil over like a frozen motor. They're going to keep an eye on our company while we're on liberty (now what the hell do you call liberty like that?) and if we're good we'll get one every two weeks. Very, very thoughtful, don't you think? I'll leave you know how I make out, so until then.

Lots of love, Slab



AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Laura Lynn Ashworth is an award-winning copywriter and political cartoonist.  While helping an elderly family member with veterans administration paperwork, she ran across “the letters” and instantly knew of their rarity, freshness and historical significance.  Although she received three publishing contracts within two months of sending the letters to major publishers, Ashworth decided to publish them herself on the advice of best-selling authors.  She currently lives and works in a northwest suburb of Chicago.

10% of author proceeds will be donated to the USO and VFW in loving memory of Sal and Loretta.


I received a copy of this book from Goddess Fish Promotions in exchange for an honest review.


Ms. Ashworth will be awarding $50 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn host.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

8 comments:

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting

Mai T. said...

The excerpt is super intriguing.

Rita said...

I liked the excerpt, thank you.

MomJane said...

I really LOVE this story.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the review!

Trix, vitajex(at)aol(dot)com

Betty Woodrum said...

I enjoyed reading about how the letters were discovered and the fact that a portion of the sales will be donated. Thank you for sharing!

amweeks said...

I loved finding out that 10% of author proceeds will be donated to the USO and VFW!

Rita said...

Great excerpt.