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Reader Reviews

Wheat Thrashing early 1900s

"Grady Birdsong's family history is Americana at its best—the stories of two families, each unique in its own evolution, and yet both are typical and characteristic of those hardworking people who made America great. A Fortunate Passage is one of the best family narratives I have read--a story that will command the attention of both amateur historians and those interested in genealogical research. The author has done a superb job of tracing the roots on one side of his family from before the American Revolution and through the Civil War to the present day. His research on the other side took him back to the Volga Delta to rediscover links to a Russian-German heritage, ancestors whose journey to the Great Heartland is a tale that will inspire a wide audience." 

~ Dan Guenther, genealogical researcher and published author of "Glossy Black Cockatoos," the 2010 Colorado Authors' League Award selection for Genre Fiction

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"A Fortunate Passage captures the true American pioneering spirit. Grady Birdsong tenderly weaves detailed imagery of life for his ancestors while tracing his family lineage in this obvious labor of love. The reader is delicately enlightened to the significant role farm land, the harvesting of wheat and the growth of the American railroads held in forming the heartland of this nation. Alongside the Birdsong family, all Americans should be proud. May future generations be ingenious enough to appreciate and inherit the characteristics of their family heritage, thanks to the efforts of Grady! A Fortunate Passage is truly an invaluable family gift, surely to be cherished for generations to come." 
~ Carron Barrella, published author of "More Than 36 Days: Three Ordinary Men Face Extraordinary Circumstances," a story about the battle for Iwo Jima

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"The Author's research on his grandfather's railroad career is both well-researched and very readable.  His description of his grandfather working around the railroad and riding in the cab of a steam locomotive is detailed down to a photograph of one of the actual engines he ran."
~ Charlie Duckworth, Senior Director, eCommerce (Ret.), Union Pacific Railroad

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"A Fortunate Passage is a loving tribute to the grandparents who inspired a young Grady with their values, struggles, and lessons of life that most of us rarely discover. The faded family photos of that early couple; a deserted, weather-worn farmhouse and barn; and an ancient car or train come back to life in his exceptional testimonial to his own greatest generation of Americans."
~ Robert L. Fischer, Colonel, USMC (Ret.), author, U.S. Naval Academy graduate, former adviser to the Vietnamese Marine Corps, and lecturer on Strategy and Tactics of the Insurgent, Naval War College

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"In skillfully capturing the history of two families, Grady has successfully opened a window into the times of those family members. He has shed light on the environment in which they lived and the events and decisions that shaped their lives. In doing so, he has created not only an account of the journey of two families through a time now past, but also a clear reflection of the periods in which they lived.
A Fortunate Passage is a work for those interested in the struggles and rhythm of the everyday lives of past generations. Mr. Birdsong offers up a wonderful gift for them and, most of all, for his family the preservation for its future generations of images, carefully researched facts, and memorabilia that offers valuable insights into the past lives of its members." 
~ Joyce Miller, Copyright Permissions Consultant and Researcher