Zimmy: His Book:
The Stories of William John Zimmerman
as told to Sherry Wachter

by Sherry Wachter



Magic Dog Press, 2016. ISBN 978-1-534-96925-4.
Reviewed by Susan J. Tweit
Posted on 10/04/2016

Nonfiction: Memoir; Nonfiction: Life Lessons; Nonfiction: Elders

The first thing I knew about Grandpa was that he told amazing stories. Stories about his family, his work, and his life: they just poured out of him.

Not that this was immediately apparent: Grandpa was a quiet man, absorbed by his own pursuits. He was a great reader. He read Ellery Queen, Zane Gray, and actually became a member of the Harlequin Romance Book Club - the only grandfather I knew who did this. And he shared his books, sneaking them to us like the contraband they were, trusting us to keep them safe until we returned them.

Sherry Wachter's grandfather, William John Zimmerman, known to the men he worked with at the Waukesha Cement Company as "Zimmy," and to others as simply Bill, was an ordinary working man, one of a passel of kids born to an immigrant German farm family in the Midwest. His life might never have made it into a book, except for his ability to spin stories that captivated at least one of his grandkids, offering her a portal into a world beyond her own difficult fundamentalist childhood.

The stories Wachter tells in this slim volume beautiful