Tim Lyons has a friendly style of writing. His works to date have been non fiction with a focus on real estate and volunteerism. THE BIG ROCK is a fictional account of five generations of a family that dream of heading West and actually do it. H/W Foster and Sarah with Horse Poli train from Buffalo to St. Louis where they meet up with Sarah’s cousin and her husband. This relationship gains importance as Brad convinces Forrest of the advantages of going entrepreneurial as compared to farming or ranching. Brad has numerous relationship that allow Forrest to become stage station, post office, telegraph office, train station and retailer of numerous new products like farm equipment, insulation, indoor plumbing, propane, ice and many more.
There was a range war with a murder. There was a robbery attempt by six lowlifes with all six dying at the hands of the family protecting their home. Prosperity continued to the point that they survived the “dustbowl” that ended so many other pioneers. In WW1 they lost their first son. The second and third generations mastered the industrial revolution. Their continual supply of the latest products and ideas kept them profitable through the years. They made a sweet deal to provide as much meat as they could grow to the Government for the second World War.
Post WW11 they began to develop their property for GI Bill returning soldiers who needed a new home.
The fourth generation man thought he was a hot shot developer. He was also a gambler . He was making a significant salary, commissions, fees and profits but left most of it on the tables. Then came the deal of deals that he cheated on a little bit and got caught. He lost it all and killed himself. His oldest son was a successful High end restaurateur and his youngest son Ed was thought to be a little slow. Dad pushed him into the deal to further hide his intentions. When it all settled he was the new owner of an old man’s bar with attached diner. Gene the previous owner was open to partnering up with Ed but had an unusual request. Conversationally, Gene heard the stories of the history of his family and wanted Ed to convert his Senior thesis into a book that they would co-own. Because Gene liked hearing stories more than reading, Ed agreed to tell the entire family history while working on the new menu and physical changes for the restaurant while developing a delivery business for their pizzas and pastas.
The book became the compilation of historical stories woven with the contemporary stories of a makeover.