Journal Three: Holding On Response - Randi Goney
The strengths for me so far in Holding On include the different writing structures used and the multitude of pictures. Writing structures such as the profile on Robert Shields, where parts of his diary are written exactly as it is in person. Another example is Miles Mahan's profile. David Isay switches it up by including dialogue between him and Miles. The different styles develop characterization on the interviewees, and even Isay himself. The other strength of multiple pictures also contributes to characterization. Having more than one picture really gives us as readers a better understanding of who these people are and what their life is dedicated to.
On the other hand, a weakness would be the lengths of the profiles. They range from nine pages to one page. I think there shouldn't be as big of a difference in pages and more of an average length. This would then secure that everyone is receiving the same benefits of being featured in the book. This could also be seen as a strength in some ways. I mean as long as David Isay is portraying these people correctly and including all the information needed for the reader to connect, there isn't much of a problem.
The profile that struck me was the Folk Doctor, Tommie Bass. The idea of compassion and doing things for the greater good really stand out. This man is far from selfish and cares most about healing the wounded with the herbs he grows himself. While reading this profile, it was almost like reality hitting me in the face. I just thought back to all the times I have been selfish and how all of it was uncalled for. The second picture in Tommie's profile gives a great visual on him and his glorious yard of herbs. It all goes to show that there are people out there that do not just care about themselves and there own successes, but others as well. The line on page 66 really stood out to me, "We didn't make any money out of it, but we was just so glad he was better, you see." This supports the idea that Tommie Bass is truly genuine and definitely not selfish.