Crisis, Pursued by Disaster, Followed Closely by Catastrophe : A Memoir of Life on the Run
Throughout his childhood, Mike O'Connor's family pretended to be normal. But Mike and his two younger sisters knew that their parents were hiding something-a secret they didn't dare talk about. The family appeared to be no different from any of their small-town Texas neighbors-that is, until suddenly, the O'Connor's would flee, leaving with only a few hours' notice, abandoning houses and pets and possessions and running across the border to Mexico.
For all of Mike's adolescence, O'Connor family life alternated between relative comfort and abject poverty-sometimes within a matter of days. From living in a Texas ranch house to living in two rented rooms in an impoverished Mexican village, the O'Connors never knew what lay ahead-only that they must not draw attention to themselves. Though their parents steadfastly denied it, the children knew that something was chasing them-a past that hovered like an invisible enemy, always waiting to strike, always in pursuit.
But it was not until much later, after his parents' deaths, that Mike O'Connor, now an investigative reporter, was able to uncover the truth about his family's past. As the secrets were unlocked one by one and the long trail of deception unfurled, Mike faced the heart-wrenching ramifications of his parents' actions-and made a discovery that shook his family loyalty to its core.
Full of incredible details of a life lived on both sides of the border, in near-poverty and near-wealth, Mike O'Connor's account is a real-life suspense story of childhood mysteries and strange circumstancesthat will enthrall readers to its very end.
In this deeply personal account, veteran journalist O'Connor's decides to explore the mysteries of his childhood: In September 1998, a year after our mother died, I finally found the courage to look inside my father's battered, taped-together cigar box, with the brand Tampa Nugget in embossed gold lettering on a red border. Over the course of more than 300 pages, O'Connor hints at some dark secret that drove his father to suddenly move the family from Texas to Mexico and back in the 1950s. Rushing, almost running at the end because we could feel the breath of whatever was chasing us, Dad and I jammed our things into the back of the black-and-white station wagon. he writes. But for all of O'Connor's journalistic credentials--CBS News, the New York Times and NPR--the pace is sluggish as he uncoils his tales of late-night border crossings, parental double-speak and ongoing misdirection. In the end, O'Connor finds his father was a petty criminal, on the run from his own scams, and his mother was caught up in the McCarthy-era red scare. Not that every memoir must have some nearly unspeakable grotesquerie at its core, but O'Connor's story lacks the emotional wallop to justify wading through it. (Aug.)
Copyright (c) Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
There are no customer reviews available at this time. Would you like to write a review?
August 20, 2007
Number of Print Pages*
Adobe DRM EPUB
* Number of eBook pages may differ. Click here for more information.