Palisades Park by Alan Brennert: 4****

OK, so this certainly is not in the same vein as his historical fiction novels Molokai or Honolulu, but the darn book grew on me. To me it seemed as if in the beginning the author was giving us a history lesson of Palisades Park, with a few characters thrown in to make it a novel. But about half way through the book I became more aware of the characters and their stories and the book came alive for me

No doubt that Brennert is an extremely readable author, and this book is obviously a chance for him to relive his childhood history and dreams. It helps us have a deeper understanding of these local amusement parks and how the affected the lives of the visitors, the workers and the towns they were situated within. These places have been dwarfed by the big national amusement chains, and that is a shame. And one benefit from reading this book is to familiarize everyone with Freddie “Boom, Boom:” Canon and his megahit – Palisades Park. 

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