Elm Street:

Memories of a Home



NATIONAL REVIEWS

From the Benjamin Franklin Awards:

"This is a really charming, warm, and personal set of stories. The author really brings the characters to life in the reader's mind. Lovely writing style and presentation."


"The prose is nostalgic, funny and comforting in its treatment, small town innocence and community ties are so real one yearns for that past. Memorable short story content is comfortable and calming. A good way to present this era mostly long gone."


From Readers' Favorite

"Elm Street: Memories of a Home by Scott Douglas Vaughan is the second book in the Memories of Home series. Elm Street will appeal to a mixed audience of young adults and some adults who are interested in fiction based on the author’s own childhood experiences. Elm Street follows Frank Wilcox in 1965 as he, Charlie Keller, Lester Freemont, Pete Yancey, and Wendell Mann grow from boyhood into manhood. In Elm Street, Frank Wilcox and his friends deal with school spankings, explorations with their Cub Scout friends, a school bully, honor roll, and the Georgia Bulldogs football games. I really liked the idea that while Elm Street: Memories of a Home (Volume 2) by Scott Douglas Vaughan was totally fictional, it was based on the author’s own experiences. I enjoyed trying to separate fact-based fiction from total fiction. Elm Street was particularly well written and I found the descriptive language really allowed me to create a clear picture of the time period, the boys, and the settings. While Elm Street is the second book in the series, I had no difficulty in jumping right into it, which was a nice change from the normal confusion I have to deal with when I begin in the middles of a series. I have to say I actually liked it so much that I plan to go back and read the first book, Brookwood Road: Memories of a Home!" - S. Hawke


"I so enjoyed Elm Street. Author Scott Douglas Vaughan has done a wonderful job in creating characters that his readers will enjoy, relate to and truly come to care about. If that isn't a hallmark of a great author, I'm not sure what is. His settings are very realistically drawn, and readers will feel as if they can simply slip through the pages and directly into Acorn. Those looking to go back to a simpler time will enjoy this book to no end." - T. Slowiak


"Elm Street: Memories of a Home is the first book I have read from Scott Douglas Vaughan and I must say that the author is a great storyteller. This is not a very fast read, but it is captivating because of the clear and compelling voice of the narrator; it’s unique and seems to force the reader to look at the world from the perspective of the characters. There is this weird feeling one has of having been to the places the author describes. Scott Douglas Vaughan makes his characters come alive and they seem so familiar that the reader could believe they have been with the characters in their own childhood. Young adults will enjoy exploring the themes of friendship, education, and love that are beautifully developed in the story." - D. Zape


From Indie Reader

"Reading through this compelling and bittersweet selection of stories, I was reminded of the Walton’s TV show, in which a budding writer raised among his dirt-poor but happy mountain family in the 1930s, will, despite moving on to the big city, write his “great American novel” about his unsophisticated family. The TV show, which aired in the early 1970s, was clearly designed to take viewers away from the ugliness and confusion of the Vietnam era to–in the words of Richard Thomas, the actor who portrayed the writer character–“a simpler, sweeter time.” A friend of mine, who is the same age and like me, grew up in a small town in the South (mine was Marlin, Texas—his was Spigot, Arkansas) and I were talking about how we wouldn’t let our kids wander off unsupervised on their bikes at night.  When I said my parents never worried about that, he said, “It was a different time back then.”

But was it?  I was born in 1967, a year before the “Days of Rage,” in which armed 1960s revolutionary groups battled cops in the streets; the same year Hollywood movies began using profanity and nudity; at the same time when child molesters were even then preying on children. If you grew up in the “silent majority” South, however, such things were as remote as the moon.  Scott Douglas Vaughan is older than I am, but we both grew up in a part of the country that could still lay claim to being a “Mayberry” kind of town.

One would think that since Vaughan uses fiction to recall this time, when one could leave doors unlocked, and wander down the town streets at night, it would render his treatment of Cumming, Georgia more remote, more critical.  But Vaughan’s fondness for his upbringing shines through, and he is able to capture for the reader—who by age, or location, might not have had the same “Our Town” experiences as Vaughan—what life was like growing up in a small town in mid-60s to early 1970s America.

Through the character of “Frank,” Vaughan takes us through the testosterone -filled adolescence of boys who fart into their elbows, panic at vaccination sots, laugh at the poor soul who dares to shoot baskets under-handed, and look askance at “braininess” exhibited by one of their own.  This is why Frank, Vaughan’s character, already intending to be a writer, hides his work from everyone but a trusted friend. Although television provides Cummings with images of the counterculture, it is revealing about the charmingly unsophisticated nature of this town that what inspires a school play from the TV line-up isn’t M.A.S.H or the hippie-friendly Smothers’ Brothers; instead it is the innocuous family-friendly Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In (a show so mainstream that even Richard Nixon performed a skit on it).

Penned by a skilled writer, Scott Douglas Vaughan’s MEMORIES OF A HOME is a compelling and bittersweet selection of stories and a time-capsule treatment of Americana in the mid-1960s."
~Ron Capshaw for IndieReader