Woodlawn Giants
by Robert Ross Williams
Page Publishing

"Our little group of giants on Woodlawn would become the best of friends."

In this memoir, Williams recalls an idyllic childhood with his many friends who lived on Woodlawn Street in West Memphis, Arkansas. These Woodlawn Giants were a close-knit group with unfenced backyards that served as a field for their beloved sports. The Ingram Boulevard Baptist Church provided spiritual leadership and life lessons the author remembers fondly decades later. He includes many of the stories which are repeated as family lore as well as the antics of the Woodlawn Giants. These endearing stories capture a time that seems much simpler than today’s fast-paced world, where face-to-face conversation has been replaced by texting, and adjoining backyards have been divided by fences. This book recalls one boy’s life with his two brothers and their many friends, including a girl nicknamed Skillet. These individuals have remained standing, much as his father’s long-ago planted pine trees, as giants in his memory.

Williams' book is a testament to the author’s gratitude to the neighborhood of his youth which operated as a village, providing him with lifelong friends. His fondness for these childhood companions is evident throughout his retelling of their many escapades. It is also the tale of strong family ties which are the foundation of his moral compass. Readers who grew up in the sixties and seventies are likely to find similarities to their own childhoods, and they are sure to relate to many of the stories revealed in this work. The narrative harkens back to a simpler time when one had at most four television channels from which to choose and where neighborhood doors remained unlocked and accessible. The author weaves wonderful stories of his childhood into a short memoir that offers readers a mesmerizing glimpse into the past.

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