Bruised Purple Hearts

Ghosts of the USA

Jerry C. Blanton

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It is the early sixties as Matt Conklin and his twin brother, Max, graduate from high school amid interesting yet chaotic times that include the Civil Rights Movement, Vietnam War, and the rise of feminism, gay rights, and the use of psychedelic drugs. Matt and Max could not be more different in their views of war, civil rights, and the part physical chemistry plays within relationships. Matt is a romantic idealist who stands up to civil rights abuses and the atrocities of war. While pursuing his dream of becoming a writer, he crosses paths with bigots, women who want to marry him, antiwar radicals, drug dealers, and gay friends struggling for societal acceptance. After he becomes a teacher to the disadvantaged, Matt craves intellectual stimulation and experiments with drugs. But what no one knows is that the spiritually sensitive Matt is receiving visits from ghosts who ask things of him. As the years pass, will Matt emerge from his struggles determined to live his truth or resigned to live a life he never wanted? In this historical tale, a young man faces racial prejudice, homophobia, and mindless acceptance of the war as he soldiers through the sixties and seventies in the swamps of Florida.

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