What the book is about:
For us, the new man, he is one of two things. First, he is the new worker, a man we instruct and investigate until his probation is complete. But also he is an idea. In the foundry, they make parts. On the line, they make autos. But in Sociological, we make men.
Tony Grams comes to America at the start of the twentieth century, set on becoming a new man. Driven to leave poverty behind, he lands a job at the Ford Motor Company that puts him at the center of a daring social and economic experiment.
The new century and the new auto industry are bursting with promise, and everyone wants Henry Ford’s Model T. But Ford needs men to make it. Better men. New men. Men tough enough and focused enough to handle the ever-bigger, ever-faster assembly line. Ford offers to double the standard wage for men who will be thrifty, sober, and dedicated… and who will let Ford investigators into their homes to confirm it.
Tony has just become one of those investigators. America and Ford have helped him build a new life, so at first he’s eager to get to work. But world war, labor strife, and racial tension pit his increasingly powerful employer against its increasingly desperate enemies.
As Tony and his family come under threat from all sides and he faces losing everything he’s built, he must struggle with his conscience and his weaknesses to protect the people he loves.
My thoughts about the book:
I was looking forward to reading this book. I loved the concept of it from a professional point of view. I’m a retired Human Resource professional and I liked the idea of closely examining the changes in the workforce when a whole list of dynamics have been changed.
I also like the stories of immigrants and how they assimilate into the new country. Neither one of these two concepts came through for me. Unfortunately, the book didn’t work for me. I had a difficult time connecting. There were times when the story seemed disjointed, skipping around a bit too much for me. I wanted to love The New Men, but I just couldn’t.
Published by Wayzgoose Press (May 14, 2014)