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AHH 24-Hr. News

Middletown: Town Hall to be Bathed in Blue - Urges Residents to Do the Same
Monday, 22 December 2014
MIDDLETOWN, NJ - Middletown Township mourns the loss of NYPD officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos who were senselessly murdered on Saturday, December 20th.  The governing body of Middletown Township stands behind the men and women of the... Read More...
IMAGE Middletown Police Report - December 22, 2014
Monday, 22 December 2014
Middletown, NJ - The following police report is provided by the Middletown Police Department.  All subjects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Scott Rubman, age 45, from Heights Terrace in Middletown, NJ, arrested on... Read More...
IMAGE AH Chamber Receives $11,500 from Atlantic Highlands Police Benevolent Association
Monday, 22 December 2014
PHOTO from left to right:  Michele Rast, Vice President of the Chamber, Chuck Lero, President, Sgt. Brian Phair, Ptl. Mike Zudonyi, Ptl. Chris Inglis, Sgt. Steve Doherty and Chief of Police, Jerry Vasto. Atlantic Highlands, NJ - At the Wednesday,... Read More...
IMAGE ex-Attorney Gets 7 Year Sentence for Diverting $100K
Monday, 22 December 2014
FREEHOLD, NJ - A former West Long Branch attorney, disbarred from the practice of law in November 2012, was sentenced to seven years in a New Jersey state prison after he was convicted earlier this year of withdrawing cash from a court-ordered... Read More...
West Front Street Bridge to Close Jan. 5
Monday, 22 December 2014
Bridge closed to all motor vehicle traffic for project duration RED BANK, NJ  – On or about Monday, Jan. 5, the West Front Street Bridge (S-17), connecting Red Bank and Middletown, will close to motor vehicle traffic until May 16. Pedestrian... Read More...

Columns

IMAGE Business Executive Fighting Lou Gehrig's Disease
by Daniel J. Vance
Saturday, 20 December 2014
About five years ago, Todd Neva, now of Hancock, Michigan, began having trouble lifting his daughter from her carseat. Over time, this muscle... Read More...
IMAGE Skewed View - December 19, 2014
by Tom Brennan
Friday, 19 December 2014
It breaks my heart to see yet another article on how my dear #GuyFieri has made Food Network nearly unwatchable: http://bit.ly/1DA59Fm Want to see... Read More...
IMAGE Our Forefathers Knew Better
by George Hancock-Stefan
Wednesday, 17 December 2014
When one does a comparison between the 17th and 20th centuries in regards to the goodness of humanity, one comes with two different views.  The... Read More...
IMAGE Review - Top Five
by David Prown
Wednesday, 17 December 2014
The other day I was scanning moviefone.com to get a sense of new releases for this weekend. Never heard of Chris Rock's "Top Five" and tried to get a... Read More...
IMAGE Skewed View - December 16, 2014
by Tom Brennan
Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Got 60 grand?  Well, you can use it to pay down your debt or buy Burt Reynold's Smokey & The Bandit TransAm: http://usat.ly/1G9j9n6 Parenting... Read More...

Upcoming Events

James Salter's first novel in almost 40 years has been praised widely by critics and readers. His protagonist, Phillip Bowman, is a young man who serves as a navigation officer in the Pacific during World War II. When the war ends, he returns home searching for a career and a wife. He finds the first as a a book editor for a publishing house. The happy marriage proves more difficult.. He meets and marries Vivian Amussen, a wealthy and privileged girl from Virginia. But there are strains in their marriage from the start, the least of which is the vast difference in their families and upbringings. As Phillip navigates the years after the war, he struggles to find a relationship that will last and a place for himself in a rapidly changing world.

While this is advertised as Bowman's story, it is not quite that simple. It is more an exploration of a whole world of characters. Bowman will disappear for pages at a time, only to be picked up again as if  there was no break. Characters are introduced and followed for a page or two, never to be seen again. This is both fascinating and frustrating. Salter creates a world of really interesting characters and I often found myself so intrigued by an auxiliary character that I was disappointed when they did not appear again. But this creates a disconnect for the reader with Bowman himself. It's hard to connect with a protagonist who is frequently absent and often the least interesting of the bunch. 

 

Salter is often noted as writing beautifully simple prose. He excels at writing sentences that manage to be bare and simple while holding great depth and grace."Day was rising, a pale Pacific dawn that had no real horizon with the tops of the early clouds gathering light. The sea was empty. Slowly the sun appeared, flooding across the water and turning it white."

 

But the lovely writing doesn't cover some of the book's flaws. Throughout the novel, Bowman acts with no consideration for other people. This doesn't change as time goes on, despite the many failed relationships that litter the story. This gives a stagnant feeling to All That Is. This seems to be an intentional decision on Salter's part, but it gives a weight to the story that makes it difficult to keep reading with enthusiasm. This novel is also decidedly male in that the women in it are more plot points than characters. They are not developed in any meaningful way because Bowman (and Salter) will use them for a few pages and then dispose of them. 

All That Is was lauded as a return of a very talented author. Unfortunately, this collection of one man's conquests and failures without much introspection or change doesn't match the excitement this book generated. 

 

All That Is

By James Salter

Alfred A Knopf April 2013

ISBN 1400043131