Friday, June 25, 2010

Virtual Book Tour & Review: "My Dog Tim" by Garasamo Maccagnone

Yesterday, we were entertained with the Author Spotlight guest post by Garasamo Maccagnone. Mr. Maccagnone is the author of the literary anthology "My Dog Tim and Other Stories". Today, for the second day of the tour, you will find my thoughts on his new book.

My Dog Tim and Other Stories
Author: Garasamo Maccagnone
Publisher: Outskirts Press
ISBN: 9781432755621
Genre: Adult, Fictional short stories

About the book:

My Dog Tim and Other Stories is an anthology of Garasamo Maccagnone’s finest works. The anchor of this collection is “St. John of the Midfield”. With newly added scenes, “St. John of the Midfield” is an almost mystical story of Bobo Stoikov, one of the world’s greatest soccer players, who escapes death in communist Bulgaria to find the American Dream. Due to severe injury during Bobo’s escape, he is unable to play once he arrives in America. Though he finds peace and happiness in simply coaching soccer to youth travel teams, his eccentric ways of teaching and his success lead to a hate-filled rivalry, and eventually, his death.

Other stories in the anthology include:

1. White Chocolate
2. Girl Dream
3. The Note Giver
4. Church Dream
5. White Fang
6. My Dog Tim
7. Goalie Boy
8. Last Dream

My Thoughts:

This book is not intended for children or adolescents, and Mr. Maccagnone states this on his Author's Note page in the beginning of the book. I was surprised at that, as I had assumed by the title and photo that this was an anthology of dog and child oriented stories.

"My Dog Tim" is a well written anthology. The stories were well written, and at times felt almost too real to be fiction. I grew up in a home where many members of the family were from the "old world" and Mr. Maccagnone captures that essence in those characters throughout his writings. Sometimes his characters were so real, they made me uncomfortable - especially when it came to the temperaments of the males.

These stories would definitely appeal to the male reader, since many are based on sports with the main character being male. They are gritty and carry a realistic and sometimes harsh tone. They aren't sugar-coated and contain offensive language, violence and tough lessons. Truly a book that would appeal to the male audience. At the same time,  these stories also appealed to me, and for the same reasons. The realistic factor was probably the largest reason. Mr. Maccagnone must have known the same people I grew up with, as I swear there were times that I could pick out an aunt, uncle or a friend of the family. I could actually hear the tones of voices and the way things were said. My favorites from the whole anthology were "My Dog Tim" (about a boy and his dog) and "White Fang" (a  humorous story about two brothers) with “St. John of the Midfield” coming in closely behind.

Parental note: This book contains offensive language, violence, sex, adultery, abuse, bigotry and racism.

About the Author

Garasamo Maccagnone studied creative writing and literature under noted American writers Sam Astrachan and Stuart Dybek at Wayne State University and Western Michigan University. A college baseball player as well, Maccagnone met his wife Vicki as a junior at WMU. The following year, after injuring his throwing arm, Maccagnone left school and his baseball ambitions to marry Vicki. After a two year stint at both W.B. Doner and BBDO advertising agencies, Maccagnone left the industry to apply his knowledge of marketing in a new venture in an up-and-coming industry. Maccagnone created a company called, “Crate and Fly,” and turned it from a store front in 1984 to a world-wide multi-million dollar shipping corporation by 1994.

In the mid 90’s Maccagnone decided to fulfill the promise of his writing career, by first penning the children’s book, The Suburban Dragon and then following up with a collection of short stories and poetry entitled, The Affliction of Dreams. His literary novel, St. John of the Midfield was published in 2007, followed by his For the Love of St. Nick, which was released in 2008. Maccagnone expanded the original version of For the Love of St. Nick and had the book illustrated for a new release in June 2009. My Dog Tim and Other Stories is a literary anthology of the author’s best work.

Garasamo “Gary” Maccagnone lives today in Shelby Township, Michigan, with his wife Vicki and three children. At this time, he is researching the location for his second novel, tentatively titled, He Lay Low.

You can visit Gary online at

Book was supplied by Pump Up Your Book for me honestly review.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the wonderful review of Gary's book. You captured its essence well. They are tough stories, but as you mention, also realistic. I'm glad you enjoyed his book.