Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Harlan Ellison Hornbook by Harlan Ellison


5 of 5 stars *****

I enjoy this revealing book of chronicled writings by Harlan Ellison. I learn so much about the author from his childhood to the time of his writing this book. I understand and totally accept Ellison for the man he is, even with our ideological differences. This makes me realize that the difference between people are never reason enough to hate or be close-minded.

This series of letters and criticisms arranged in chronological order is heart warming and brutally honest. Harlan Ellison, a wordsmith who, at times, breaks the rules of grammar on purpose for the right effect. His knowledge of his craft is superior. 

The Hornbook is autobiographical but not comprehensive. Harlan reveals just as much of himself, which is a lot, as he wants. The collection of essays and columns are mainly comprised of events that happen to him on a daily basis. The author writes about the past with remarkable recall. Many of these recollections are milestones that shape his individuality, becoming the man he is. 

Truth is important to Harlan Ellison and competency vital for his success. These qualities make for a storyteller who remains true to the clever plots and interesting characters of his short stories and novels. The bulk of Harlan's writing is Science Fiction in different formats, mainly books and film. His rise to fame is foretold in The Harlan Ellison Hornbook; an intriguing account of a man who overcame so much to live the life he wants on his terms. I thank Harlan for his honesty and glimpse into his life, Ellison Wonderland.