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July 16, 2014

Sterling Heights author pens story inspired by patriotism

By Eric Czarnik
C & G Staff Writer

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Brooks, 46, from Sterling Heights, said “A Right Hope” is a story about love, patriotism, perseverance and relationships.

STERLING HEIGHTS — Memorial Day and Independence Day are periods of patriotism in America, and a local first-time author recently celebrated his own way of putting his love of country into words.

On June 17, Sterling Heights resident Michael Cal Brooks released his first book, titled “A Right Hope.” He said the inspirational fictional story is about a young man who wants to be president of the United States, and with the help of his wife, sets out to fulfill his dream.

“It’s about love, patriotism, and perseverance and relationships,” he said. “It’s very faith-based.”

Brooks said the story has been in his head for quite a few years, dating back to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in 2001. He said the sense of patriotism from that era inspired him, so he had his main character, James, witness the events from a television set.

In the story, James receives guidance from his grandfather, Michael.

“I’ve always had a desire to write a story about a grandfather/grandson mentor relationship where the kid didn’t grow up with his father,” he said. “I wanted to create the grandfather to become a Vietnam War veteran.”

As the plot develops, James goes to Columbia University in New York to lay the foundation to pursue his ambitions, and that is where he meets his wife, Brooks said. 

Brooks, 46, said his personal ambitions took their own twists and turns throughout life until he became motivated to write.

He said he played baseball when he got out of high school, and he said he wasn’t serious enough at the time to pursue a college education. Instead, he went into the construction industry and was a contractor for about 15 years, he said.

But after the economy suffered a downturn in 2008, Brooks’ family gave him an opportunity to attend college at Wayne State University to relieve his regret of not getting a degree.

“My family is a very educated family, so it bothered me a lot,” he said.

While Brooks pursued history as a major and graduated last December, it was during his college years that he felt the desire to write the stories that accumulated in his mind. So that is when he started “A Right Hope.”

“I’ve always had the imagination to write stories,” he said. “I was just never confident enough in my writing to put it on paper.”

Aleta Brooks, Michael’s mother, said she finished reading the book not long after it was released and said she loved the story. She said her son’s inspiration while writing the novel came from his exposure to professors who introduced him to a wide variety of philosophies and political views.

“I would say that he really came alive politically in college,” she said. “He has always been interested in history. … It was pretty cool to watch him develop that way in literature.”

Learn more about Michael Cal Brooks’ book, “A Right Hope,” by visiting Tate Publishing’s website at www.tatepublishing.com.

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Eric Czarnik at eczarnik@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1058.