Dec 23, 2010 – Thomas T. Fields Jr has recently release two books that will please the history buff in the last minutes of Christmas shopping. One book, “I Called Him Grand Dad” focuses on the wild roller coaster ride of Louisiana and National politics in the 1920s, 30s and 40s. Papers that were recently discovered shed new light on the Huey Long administration, the Louisiana Scandals and the workings of Louisiana and National politics. This book is totally factual and contains over a hundred private political papers of Harvey G. fields. The second book, “Desert Burning” depicts the civilians living in Saudi Arabia before, during an dafter Desert Storm. That is a ficticious novel that is 97% factual. Relive the sights and sounds that so many of us experienced twenty years ago. Go back to a time when every news channel carried the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq and for the four months that we agonized over the troop deployments and then finally the mother of all battles when the world was informed that Desert Shield had become Desert Storm. “I Called Him Grand Dad” has received several good reviews. One from OurHistoryProject . com follows. “I Called Him Grand Dad” is a Biography of Harvey Goodwin Fields written by his grandson Thomas T. Fields. The book itself is an exploration in not only Field’s life but also about America. It explores the behind the scenes politics at the levels of both state and federal levels. It delves into the everyday life, setting the stage for industry, work conditions, laws and ethics while giving us a rich insight about a man who was convicted by his own standards and who by his actions did what he thought was right. An advocate of the Law, Fields would rise to fame and notoriety of one of the greatest legal minds and Public Servants in American History. This book covers our history from the late 1800’s until the mid 1900’s and is truly a chronicle of our America. Through two World Wars, the great depression, prohibition, unionizing, high profile court cases such as the Scopes Trail and his runs on State and Federal positions including the White House, Harvey G. Fields had a remarkable life that you can now be a part of too. This book, unlike many that draw conclusions by theory to what was thought and what was said is supported with dozens upon dozens of actual letters, memo’s and notes written by fields himself. Fields himself was a Progressive Democrat and will appeal to the party of today in his thoughts, actions and legislation. For the opposition to the Democratic Party of today it will give you insights to the workings of, and the history of that party. However, no matter which side you fall on, pro or con in the political arena this is a book about our country and it is rich with our history as a nation. Craig Anderson Our History Project also reviewed “I Called Him Grand Dad” This review follows. The title, I Called Him Grandad by Thomas T. Fields, Jr., suggests an easy going book with reflections of a paternal grandfather. This is not the case. It is an in depth biography of Harvey G. Fields whom I had not heard of. His list of appointments and accomplishments boggle the mind: successful lawyer; State Senator; Federal District Attorney (check out his conviction rate in the book); Chairman of the Democratic Central Committee; orator, author; but most of all, a staunch fighter for the justice system. As I started reading the book, I was drawn into Thomas’s writing style that was to the point, detailed and entertaining. One minor point is there are a few times that the stories do overlap, so there is some repetition. The biography spans Field’s life from 1883 to 1961 – the years that shaped America into what it is now. The book also gives insight and detail into his close friends, acquaintances and co-workers, who were some of the most influential and powerful men in America at that time such as: Huey Long, the former Governor of Louisiana; President Roosevelt; Clarence Darrow, who defended Darwinism in the famous Scopes Monkey Trial in the 20’s. The list goes on and on. An added bonus were the letters of correspondence included in the book from all of the players. How one man could keep up with all his involvements is a testament to Fields of his love of life and work. What I found particularly interesting is the connections of the justice and political infrastructure that Fields was a part of. He was drawn into some of the major historic events at that time. Corruption was rampant before and during Fields time in office, and it is almost as if he wanted to singlehandedly tackle the “black hats” in Louisiana that had been ruling for years and years. He was a crucial part of the infamous Louisiana Scandals in the ‘30’s that brought down many politicians. This did not actually help Fields in his political career; other agendas in Washington ruled that day. Fields was part of some of the most cut-throat wrangling that America has ever seen. Thomas does not dwell too much into the home life and outside activities of Fields, although I think that may have shown another side to the man. He does elude that in retirement he enjoyed talking to random strangers about all types of events. This suggests that Fields was a likable individual and a bit of a storyteller, which eventually was passed down to his Grandson, the author. I have heard stories of Louisiana and, like most, have seen films about that southern state. To read about the pulse of power that ran that part of the world for those few decades and to see it though the eyes of a major player was a treat for this history buff. also reviewed Desert Burning. Here is that review: Desert Burning is written by Thomas T. Fields Jr. who also wrote the entertaining biography I Called Him Grand Dad. This time Thomas delves into fiction with a bit of fact thrown in. The story revolves around one central character, Ted Atcheson, who is contracted to work for a large oil firm in Saudi Arabia just before the Kuwait invasion by Iraq. Written in a timeline style, Ted recounts his emotions and anxieties of not only himself, but his family back in the states and his co-workers as they sit right next door to an escalating war. What Desert Burning shows is that in most stressful situations, humans have a tendency to either be helpful or take advantage. Thomas graphically writes about both with excerpts of real human emotion. For example, Ted and co-workers venturing out into the desert to befriend the nervous troops and the dark side of the war that we never saw on TV played out in Kuwait. The lasting thing that Desert Burning leaves us with is a non-military perspective of a war that was, to most of us, just memories of televised events.


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