ningerbil (ningerbil) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

Book 23- Cleveland In the Gilded Age

23. Cleveland in the Gilded Age, by Dan Ruminski and Alan Dutka. This was a bit frustrating. There's a lot to like here, it's not a terrible book. The information seems complete and well-researched, I love all the photos and the authors clearly know their history. I also like Ruminski's conversational style. The problems are mostly with organization. The organization is all over the place, and there is a lot of repetition. A lot of this comes from having two different authors with two different writing styles writing in the same chapter. Both are good writers, although Dutka has more of academic feel. In my personal opinion, if you are going to have two different authors, either the writing needs to meld and flow as one (you can tell who wrote what, and the shifts in writing style are jarring), or have one author write one chapter, and the other write the next). It's not a bad book, and there is a lot of fascinating trivia. For example, I knew Rockefeller lived on Millionaire's Row, but never knew that Euclid Avenue was considered THE spot in the nation for the elite, and was even a tourist destination for overseas travelers. I knew Northeast Ohio once was renowned for pottery, glassmaking/marbles, Quaker Oats/cereals and - of course- rubber. Did you know that once a Cleveland company was the largest producer of kerosene stoves in the world? I was surprised how much industry and innovation had its start in Cleveland. As I said, there's a lot of good information on the people who lived on Millionaire's Row and their industries- I just wish it were better organized.

Currently reading: Three Musketeers, by Alexandre Dumas; A Curious Man, by Neal Thompson; and The Vanishing Newspaper, by Philip Meyer.
Tags: history, non-fiction

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