by Alan Karmin
reviewed by Barbara C. Johnson, Advocate of Court Reform and Attorney at Law
After I offered to read and review The Measure of a Man in exchange for a free copy from the author, Alan Karmin, I expected to be bored by it.
As a lawyer known for her stance on false allegations, I have been inundated with emails and phone calls from fathers who had fought or were fighting for their children in the halls of our so-called justice system. All the stories were similar: no matter what evidence Dad had, no matter what supporting witnesses he had, no matter what was fair, no matter how revengeful or out of control or just plain vindictive the mother of their children was, no matter how often Dad proved that she lied to the police, no matter how often she lied to the court, he lost. Mom got sole physical and, often, sole legal custody.
I assumed Karmin’s story would be more of the same, for those stories accurately described the inevitable course of a domestic relations action in our neo-feminist society.
Much to my surprise, the book was a page-turner. I read it in two nonstop sessions, interrupted only for Day 3 of the Republican National Convention. I was determined to hear Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin’s speech. After listening to the Democratic female pundits on the Larry King Show critiquing Palin’s speech, I shut the TV off and began the second session. Although exhausted, I continued reading until I finished it at 5:15 a.m.
The book conveyed Karmin’s emotion, thought, development, and action. It was like the Tom Mix serial “Miracle Rider” I used to see as a child for ten cents at the Magnet theatre. Each Saturday, I learned that neither Tom Mix nor Tony his “wonder horse” was killed when they galloped off the top of the cliff to avoid being trampled by a stampede of buffalo or when they rode through a burning forest. At the top of each chapter, Tom Mix and his faithful horse appeared with renewed energy. A classic formula for novel-writing.
Karmin has talent. He knows how to “show and tell.” I am surprised a mainstream publisher did not pick up his book for publication. Maybe he never tried to interest a mainstream publisher in his book. I don’t know, but what we have here is a true memoir of the terrifying nightmare of trusting in a family-court judge to dispense justice instead of perverting it.
A five star read. Click on the book image below to buy it.