The Real Paul Makinen?: (Shingle Creek Sagas Book 2) Part 2

David R Yale

The Real Paul Makinen?: (Shingle Creek Sagas Book 2) Part 2
Healthy Relationship Press
1 August 2022

The Real Paul Makinen?: (Shingle Creek Sagas Book 2) Part 2

David R Yale

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The Second Book in the Award-Winning Shingle Creek Sagas: The Real Paul Makinen?Part 2

Two teens help a 1970s Midwestern blue-collar community lead a general strike that triumphs over a right-wing conspiracy to suppress wages, deny free speech, and undermine civil rights.

In a 1971 North Minneapolis neighborhood, nineteen-year-old Paul Makinen and his friends face being drafted into the Vietnam War or surviving deplorable working conditions alongside their parents. Paul chooses a different path, working as the Shingle Creek Park director.

The first park director without a college degree, Paul and his friends continue developing new programs for kids and adults, and serve on a Teen Council to run those programs. As Paul grows in his role as a leader, he wrestles with the damage his abusive parents did to his soul. Sixteen-year-old Karen Ahlberg, Paul’s close friend and a council participant, helps him conquer his demons, though Paul doesn’t feel worthy of her confidence in him.

Inspired by the work Paul and his friends are doing, the Shingle Creek adult community develops a thirst for change. Escaping the tyranny of low wages and ending dangerous working conditions no longer seems like a pipe dream, so the Teen Council decides to meet monthly to learn more about the community’s wants and needs. The teens’ Soup & Sandwich meetings become a democratic voice for the whole community. Other Minneapolis neighborhoods ask for guest speakers from Shingle Creek to help them launch similar programs.

As the community organizes to spur change, a factory owner from Shingle Creek, a leader of The Communal Association that suppresses unions and working-class wages, takes the lead in attacking any change that threatens his supply of low wage workers.

The Communal Association relentlessly targets every area of the neighborhood, from cutting off electricity at community meetings, to paying thugs to molest teenage girls in the streets, to sharply raising property taxes, to trying to manipulate the White community to turn against their Black neighbors. But the Shingle Creek blue collar workers nonetheless start building a community that works for ordinary people.

This saga also deals with the emotional and human side of the workers’ struggle. Because you can’t really change much if the political and personal aren’t intertwined.

From fascinating counseling scenes developed in consultation with a licensed psychotherapist, where people learn how to work together better, to the unusual strike tactic of finding a legal way to take apart and cart off unsafe railroad tracks, this novel is full of pleasant surprises. We see, stage-by-stage how a working class community that feels powerless and discouraged transforms itself into a fierce, successful, and prosperous powerhouse. In the process, Paul conquers his demons, and allows himself to return Karen’s love for him.

While it is fiction, this novel is based on historical facts we can all learn from because history does repeat itself. When we win changes in the laws governing our country, we don’t eliminate greedy, power hungry special interests. They just find new ways to grab control. Our democracy is threatened again today, and it’s this author’s hope that information from our past can inspire and empower we, the people, to take action again.

The Real Paul Makinen? is divided into three parts. This is Part 2, pages 369 through 754. Parts 1 and 3 are sold separately. Search for ISBN 978-0-9791766-0-9 and 978-0-9791766-3-0. Or buy the eBook, which has all three Parts, for just $4.99.

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