The following are excerpts from professional reviewers on amazon.com, newspapers and internet sites.
September 2, 2006 By Jeffrey Leach - "Magical"
At first glance, you wouldn't think Robert Gately's "South of Main Street" that impressive of an effort. Some place called Sun Rising Press published the book. Who are they? I'd never heard of them before. Then there is the fact that Gately once worked for a telecommunications firm before retiring to write full time. Hmmm. It's difficult to imagine an amazing author spending a large part of his or her life working in corporate America. I'm here to tell you that THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED IN ROBERT GATELY'S CASE! "South of Main Street" is one of the most remarkable novels I've had the pleasure to read in some time. Look past the fact that a small press published the book, past the fact that the author worked in the soul-deadening world of corporate America, and you'll discover an incredible talent capable of producing a work simply bursting at the seams with memorable characters and situations. Even better, "South of Main Street" covers all the bases in terms of the human condition. Gately gives us a story incorporating tragedy and loss, hope and renewal, and all the places in between. It's a cliché, but you'll definitely laugh AND cry while reading this book.
Nov 28, 2005: Reviewer: Daniel Jolley, Shelby, North Carolina, is on Amazon.com’s top 15 reviewer list with approximately 2200 reviews.
"…You won't want the book to end, but you'll be powerless to put it down - I stayed up to 3 AM finishing it…"
"…I really can't even begin to describe Henry's remarkable nature or the magical effect he has on others … a beloved character as you're ever likely to meet…"
"… keep some Kleenex handy as you read because several moments can certainly bring tears to your eyes …"
"…South of Main Street is one of the most touching novels I've ever read … Its life-affirming message will inspire you and renew your faith in humanity as you see how one man - even one as eccentric as Henry - can make a huge difference in the lives of many."
My review of "South of Main Street", November 21, 2005 Reviewer: Ervin E. Harmon (Tarpon Springs,Fl USA)
"This book starts with a bang and gets your attention from the very beginning with each chapter drawing you more into the story than the chapter before…"
"… I found myself saying over and over again 'WOW this is an amazing story'…"
"… I agree with the other reviewers that have read this book. The story is warm, funny, heartfelt, a feel-good book, a lift-your-spirits book, and a well written book."
"I … would recommend South Of Main Street to anyone of all ages … an outstanding book and I plan to buy some copies for friends and people that I know will benefit by reading this book."
Great, and truly memorable, December 26, 2005 Reviewer: C. MCCALLISTER (SE Michigan) - (Mr. McCallister is currently ranked in the top 175 on the Amazon Reviewer list)
"This is a debut novel for Robert Gately, and he has started off with a bang. 'South of Main Street' is poignant, well-written, and very memorable. It makes you take a look at yourself, and others around you, in a different way. What more can you ask?"
Restoration: The Seers Among Us, December 17, 2005 Reviewer: Grady Harp (Los Angeles, CA United States) - Grady is currently ranked in the top 10 on the Amazon Reviewer with over 2400 reviews done).
"SOUTH OF MAIN STREET is an exceptionally fine first novel …"
"… Usually this reviewer reserves the 5 start category for brilliant works by distinguished authors, but this novel from a new voice is so fresh and satisfying that it commands its own niche in the review arena."
"… Gately not only writes well, he also knows how to build a story line from disparate elements and make them all meld to fit the arc of his theme."
"… This writing is the work of an artist who not only appreciates the ability to character-drive a tale, but also has the beauty of writing skills to make the story flow with a compelling charm…"
"… Since Gately has a track record with writing screenplays it would seem only natural that this very fine book find its way into the theaters…
January 5, 2006 Reviewer: Father Kurt Messick (Bloomington, IN USA, top 15 amazon reviewers with 2200 reviews.)
"This is a strongly written first novel by Robert Gately, who obviously has something important to say … This is a very good novel, with effective characters and a story that lingers in the soul."
Excellent Book!, February 2, 2006 Reviewer: Christoph M. Davidson (Farmingville, N.Y. United States)
"Intelligent and thought-provoking South of Main Street is … a story about forgiveness … a story about loving unconditionally and ultimately a lesson on reconciliation."
"I … found myself near tears or getting goose-bumps on more than one occasion. Good book, Good read and I'd recommend it to anyone who reads fiction."
You've Got to Read This Book!, November 18, 2005 Reviewer: Cathy Pitts (South Carolina)
"This is a wonderfully warm and funny book that reinforced my faith in people. Not only does the brisk-moving storyline keep you turning the pages, but the characters become close friends, especially Henry. This is one of those rare books that is easy to read, yet stays with you long after the book has been put back on the shelf. Can you tell I loved this book? Enjoy."
Outstanding! Inspirational!, November 14, 2005 Reviewer: JoEllen Palumbo (Port Jefferson, NY)
"This was such a 'feel good' book, I didn't want it to end."
"It renewed my faith in human kindness … it touched me on so many emotional levels."
"There is rarely a book that my entire family (including 2 teenagers) can enjoy and we all loved it! It's funny, heartfelt, and lifts your spirit."
"This story makes you want to be a better person."
"Bethlehem-based author Robert Gately's … novel South of Main Street succeeds because of one real character -- Henry Wolff ... part Walter Mitty and part Confucius." EXPRESS TIMES By David Kern
"Gately is front and center with the theme of his first novel -- one person can make a difference in this world." EXPRESS TIMES By David Kern
Betty Erdos, Robert’s first grade teacher, former Sister of Charity nun (Sister Florence Edmond)
"...Intense, spell-binding, sensitive, humorous and thought provoking..."
"...A glimpse into the human condition, with its myriad forms of suffering and success..."
"Robert Gately’s … portrayal of character and description of place puts the reader right there as a participant or observer! This is a must-read story."
Clare Pfeifer Advocate for Human Services artist/photographer
"Bob Gately's book South Of Main Street… is a real page-turner from the start."
"Gately's characters … are vibrant … (Henry’s) inner thoughts are written so poignantly by the author, he will leave you wondering if Henry Wolff's 'world' is really a better place to live in."
"This story will have you laughing … crying … and then leave you visualizing the impact of how much goodness and sense came to a community from the interactions with one courageous and sincere man."
"WOW!!!!! What a tremendous story… (the) characters are loveable and full of life … Henry is the most vibrant character of them all and I truly loved him. His thoughts, ponderings and actions … makes sense if you follow his line of logic. Yes, I did cry miserably when …" (sorry, folks. I had to remove her comment here – don’t want to give away the ending)
"… so much goodness and sense came to those (he touched). I was also developing a special fondness for Dixie … and the two sister's interaction came to life realistically also. I felt as if (the characters) were real and I knew them personally, because your words jumped off the pages at me."
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