A Blazing Gilded Age by Rich DiSilvio
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Another history lesson served up under historical fiction by Rich DiSilvio. The last thirty years of the 19th century was a magnificent time to live a brutal life in the Pittsburgh metro area of the United States. A Blazing Gilded Age opens in Hellhole - A Huxley Coal Mine where Marcus Wozniak survives a deadly mine explosion but many friends and his father are killed. That tragedy sets the tone for this novel. It's a hard knock look at how most people lived and died in the time. A period of growth and prosperity for this country as a whole, it's just that the successes were built on the backs of folks like the Wozniaks.
The characterization in A Blazing Gilded Age is shy only of brilliance. The way these people spring to life from the pages, how you feel for them and grieve with them and celebrate with them, is not an easy task for a writer. DiSilvio has the gift. The addition of actual historic figures cements the reality of the story, despite it being fiction.
If you are looking for a sweeping, romantic look at history through rose colored glasses, move on. However, if you like a little grit in your reading, you will certainly enjoy Rich DiSilvio's A Blazing Gilded Age.
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