Book Review: Words Unspoken, Things Unseen

Publisher Xlibris Corporation

Words Unspoken, Things Unseen. Joe Rodriguez ISBN-13  9781499004571. Publisher Xlibris Corporation

Editor’s Note: Throughout this book, the author initiates a timely discussion about contemporary homelessness and its impact on those of all ages. Real life social issues associated with homelessness is discussed and the characters that he brings to life add credence to the very real issues of homelessness. The cast of characters in this story have depth and could be someone that you have met or know and but for some luck on your part, that helps you to avoid homelessness, could be you. Take a look into our current political and social living conditions as you enjoy being taken along on the eye-opening trip that you are happy you have avoided. If you can, you should help others who are not as fortunate.

In this fictional story a downtown homeless shelter, the Settlement, is targeted for demolition during the Great Recession. In its place, the city wants to build a sports complex. Reverend Stephen Bentham, the Settlement’s founder and director, draws on the loyalty of his assistant, the house physician, and a visiting archaeology professor to save the hundred beds. A school-age boy also joins the effort. Fending off the bulldozers tests each character. Their own troubled histories compel them to help. One of the toughest challenges is burying the house physician when he succumbs during the fight. Loyalty to one’s faith or to progress or to honor itself are grand phrases. The actual work at a shelter is hard and tedious, like growing a garden out of concrete….Carol


About the Author: Joe Rodriguez is a novelist, literary critic, war veteran, licensed vocational nurse and university professor who once slept on a steam grate at the very college where he would later teach. Rodriguez served in Vietnam from 1965-1966 and earned his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from San Diego, in 1977. and he taught in the department of Mexican American studies at San Diego State University. Rodriguez is also the author of “Oddsplayer”, a novel about Latino, Anglo, and African-American soldiers in the Vietnam War and he is currently in the process of publishing his third book, “Growing the American Way,” a novel about a group of people who grow marijuana in secret in the desert, make a small fortune and turn their lives around. He currently resides in San Diego.

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