ASC 110 College Reading and Studies
While reading “Bombingham” Anthony Grooms puts you in a position to feel the Burke families struggles and how they each handle these struggles individually, as well as a family. Grooms opens up the story with Walter as a soldier in the Vietnam war, attempting to show the audience the hardships in Vietnam. Walter is seeming to have trouble writing a letter to the family of a friend that has recently been killed during the war. While writing this letter, it triggers memories, and the audience is then thrown into Walters life growing up as a kid, showing the hard times of growing up as an African-American in a segregated Birmingham, Alabama. Throughout the book, you come upon a few scenario changes. Grooms could be explaining to you about the marches downtown in deep detail in one chapter, only to switch to a gun fight in the muddy jungles of Vietnam in the next. I can agree and somewhat disagree with the style Grooms choose to use. Starting out the book in Vietnam set up the whole entire story. Without the Vietnam stories, you wouldn't get a true sense of Walters personality, as well as his bad and good memories growing up as a child. Switching between Vietnam and his childhood showed you that Walter had had somewhat of a soft spot for talking about his childhood, and that it changed him as a person. When reading this book, I appreciated the fact that Grooms wrote like this just because it made you develop a stronger relationship with Walter as a person, seeing that he was trying to be a good person and write to Haywood's parents, but at the same time be reminded of a troubled past. I can see why some people might be taken back by the style Grooms uses, just because it is so different. But the way that he wrote it showed the readers a different aspect of most civil rights stories or Vietnam stories. He explained the story as someone right there, experiencing it all, and telling...
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