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Trespassers Will Be Baptized: The Unordained Memoir of a Preacher's Daughter
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Trespassers Will Be Baptized: The Unordained Memoir of a Preacher's Daughter

3.55  ·  Rating Details ·  139 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Growing up Southern and Baptist in Eastern Kentucky, Elizabeth Hancock's world revolved around Sunday School, foreign missions projects, revival meetings and of course, the Kentucky Wildcats, who "glorified God through their goal-shattering, soul-shattering play." Hancock chronicles her childhood misadventures with sardonic wit, detailing her and her sister Meg's mischievo
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published June 4th 2008 by Center Street (first published 2008)
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Feb 05, 2009 Amy rated it really liked it
If I could I would give this book 4.5 stars. It was great. I picked it up off the local library's recommended biographies cart (for their next book club discussion, which I really had no plan to attend) and thought the title was hilarious and the premise interesting.

And the book was hilarious - I laughed so hard I was crying almost uncontrollably at one point. But then, a few chapters from the end, I looked up from my reading and realized that somewhere the book had taken a subtle, expertly-wie
Aug 24, 2008 Nancy rated it it was amazing
This is a memoir of a daughter of a KY baptist minister growing up in the 80s. It is funny and sweet and I enjoyed it very much.....made me think of so many PKs I knew. If you don't know what a PK is, you probably need to read the book. Having a baptist friend to translate for you might help, but everyone can relate to things in this book including the overwhelming seduction of the acid wash jean. The title alone cracks me up. I hope to someday myself obtain the status and reverence of The ...more
Sep 07, 2009 Sherrie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: already-read

"Trespassers Will be Baptized" by Elizabeth Emerson Hancock
(from inside flap)

Growing up Southern and Baptist in eastern Kentucky, Elizabeth Hancock lived in a world that revolved around church, foreign missions projects, revival meetings, and of course, the Kentucky Wildcats.
In Trespassers Will be Baptized, Hancock draws us into her riotous tales of childhood misadventures, recounting her and her sister Meg's mischievous--if harmless--abuses of pastoral power: stealing Guess jeans from the Afri
Sandra H.
Jul 19, 2008 Sandra H. rated it it was amazing
Wow. I picked up this book based on the great press (mostly the Southern Living review, I'm a devout fan), and I was not disappointed. The book is laugh-out-loud hilarious, and does a wonderful job of capturing coming-of-age in the context of a faith family. However, it's not ALL comedy for this author. I noticed that a reviewer below found this book "too light." Hmmm...weeeellll...the book describes the trauma and heartbreak this family endured while a beloved relative was in a decade-long coma ...more
It had potential but the author's tone irritated me too much. Still had some funny and interesting stories though.

"As I felt my eyelids shut, I wondered if maybe the miracles in the Bible always seemed so great because they were written from the point of view of someone the miracle did not actually happen to. Maybe for everyone who had to go through them, the great mystery of miracles was that they were horrible. Joy and awe and adoration were just the side effects of realizing it wasn't happeni
May 08, 2011 Shawna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
This was a very sweet book. I am leery of books that present an uncritical look at the indoctrination of organized religion and the damage that it can do. However, Hancock presented the misconceptions that she grew up believing as a preacher's kid in a kind and loving way. The chapters are interconnected well and the last chapter reveals itself splendidly, bittersweet -- showing the boundaries (or limitations of religious faith). You realize that preachers are just normal guys who struggle to ...more
Dec 23, 2008 Alison rated it liked it
Amusing light read, perfect for metro commuting. Beware of over-the-shoulder snoopers who see chapter titles such as "Faithfulness" and think you are reading a Christian inspirational tome. I was reading this one day on the metro, and this guy asked me about it, saying it's so rare to see people concerned with faith. When I explained it wasn't quite about that, he asked if I wanted to hear about Jesus. Thank someone my stop was next!
Mar 10, 2010 Madameugly rated it liked it
Solidly written and entertaining BUT the overall tone left a bad aftertaste. There's something about a memoir written where the adult writer layers sarcastic wisdom onto a child self that is far too young for such sophistication that smacks of child beauty pageants.

A few of the tales were forced and cloying in their sweetness. But the true gem is "The Relic of Saint Margaret". (for me Hancock's sister Meg was more interesting than the author)
Oct 29, 2008 Melodi rated it it was ok
Shelves: can-t-finish
It was just another memoir. It is about a girl who was raised Southern Baptist and her father was the minister. She definetely had a cute way of writing, but I got a little bored with the context. I didn't really see her life as all that fantastic to write about. I liked A Girl Named Zippy better for sure.
Jul 19, 2008 Kimberly rated it it was ok
I was looking for a light book read and, to that note, this book performed. Unfortunately, I found it to be too light. I was hoping to laugh out loud-it solicited only an occasional smile. I was hoping to identify with the author as I myself grew up in the West Virginia/Ohio/Kentucky Southern Baptist region; I saw a few of my friends in the pages but nothing I could really bite into.

I did, however, pick it up on sale so it wasn't a total bust.
Sep 26, 2010 Jamie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was recommended to me by my mother in law. It's a great book that could have been written about me. I think anyone who grew up Southern Baptist would appreciate this book. Those of you whose parents were in the ministry will enjoy it even more. The book is very funny and contains all the essential Southern Baptist humor.
Aug 01, 2008 Stacy268 rated it liked it
Shelves: adult, nonfiction
I do love the memoir, and this one looks at growing up in Kentucky as the daughter of a Baptist preacher. I was expecting more of a Jesus Land feel, but that is not the case at all. Emy was a child of great faith and we watch her struggle as she realizes that maybe her daddy can't fix everything.
Jan 22, 2009 Patricia rated it really liked it
Shelves: personalessays
Very different from what I normally read. It's not a downer, nor is it uplifting, and for that, I love it. It is pretty funny in quite a few parts, and I love it for that as well. It's not preachy, it's a woman, telling her story, trying to put her adult eyes back behind her eyes as a child and then let us know what she experienced when she was little. I recommend it :)
Jun 26, 2009 Mark rated it it was ok
Shelves: gave-up-on
I was interested in the book because she's from my "tribe" (she grew up a Southern Baptist P.K.) and because my boys are walking in her shoes (so to speak) but I ended up not finishing it.

The writing is stilted and her tone is uneven. She doesn't seem to be able to decide whether she wants to write a memoir or a series of funny "can't believe how stupid church folks can be" stories.
Alicia J
Oct 26, 2010 Alicia J rated it really liked it
With the exception of never being a pastor's daughter, this book was like reading my own childhood. I can't imagine many people who weren't raised Southern Baptist actually enjoying or relating to it, but for those of us with SBC in our history (whether we like it or not (and for me that's a not)) it's quite enjoyable.
May 15, 2010 Heather marked it as to-read
I have already read this once from a library edition, and when I found it half price the other day I couldn't pass up the chance to own it and am looking forward to reading it again, it is hysterical!
Oct 29, 2008 Daisy rated it it was amazing
All the great press this book has received is well-deserved. It's a gem of a memoir, worth reading not because it's about some life that's extraordinary or farfetched or just unbelievable, but because it's familiar, warm, and funny as heck. Anyone who ever sat on a pew as a child should get it.
Oct 29, 2009 Melissa rated it it was ok
I started this book at the end of last school year and enjoyed the short and funny memories of the author. However, the funny episodes ended and we had to deal with the death of a grandmother and the preacher's decision to change careers. Not so great at the end.
I got about 75 pages in and realized that I was wasting my time. There are parts that are mildly amusing, but nothing more than that. And I suddenly felt like I was reading "The Making of a Fundamentalist Neocon". Someone else is going to enjoy this, but not me.
Feb 25, 2010 Renee rated it really liked it
An interesting book. It was definitely not quite what I expected, but it had a twist of humor that I really enjoyed.

It put a very human face and voice on a pastor and his family, as perceived by his young (I thought almost too young) daughter.
Apr 17, 2009 Liz rated it really liked it
I think that everyone would like this book. It's funny and poignant. However, as a 29 year-old PK, I definitely recommend it to PKs and parents of PKs. When I finished the book, I just wanted to call my dad and tell him that I was proud to be his kid.
Sep 12, 2008 Sharon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: essays, humor, nonfiction
I had high hopes for this book and was not disappointed. I was able to relate to the author so well, being the daughter of an ordained minister myself, but I think that anyone would find this a good read. Amusing stories with a poignant punch. Definitely recommended.
Mary Chambers
Nov 16, 2011 Mary Chambers rated it really liked it
Truth is stranger than fiction. That's why I love a memoir. I could totally relate to this one and enjoyed it. Of course, into every life a little rain must fall. It was handled with grace and love.
Oct 13, 2012 Hope rated it it was ok
This book was...well, just ok. Laugh out loud funny at times, boring at times... And too preachy at the end.
Feb 01, 2009 Jenn rated it liked it
A light memoir from a Kentucky, Baptist preacher's kid. It was okay. Funny in parts. Boring in parts.
Jan 26, 2016 Christy rated it it was ok
Shelves: memoir
OK, but not great. I think it might be more meaningful to someone who grew up in a religious household. Many of her stories were amusing, but they didn't particularly resonate with me.
May 25, 2009 Wanda rated it really liked it
What a nice family. The way these PKs thought about their positions as PKs, and religion was funny. However, they had to learn the hard lesson that nothing stays the same.
Arlene Brown
Sep 09, 2010 Arlene Brown rated it really liked it
This book is too funny. "This is a close as you can get to southern Church life without eating your weight in velveeta."
Dec 20, 2008 Kevin rated it did not like it
started this and then it got just plain dumb. not a good enough story and writing was not easy to read
Julia Nixon
Mar 30, 2012 Julia Nixon rated it really liked it
Since my husband was a Baptist minister for a few years, I enjoyed reading this very realistic book that explores a child's view of the ministry and religion.
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