Based on her lauded commencement address at Sarah Lawrence College, this stirring essay by bestselling author Ann Patchett offers hope and inspiration for anyone at a crossroads, whether graduating, changing careers, or transitioning from one life stage to another. With wit and candor, Patchett tells her own story of attending college, graduating, and struggling with the i...more
Because it was a commencement speech that she have at her alma mater, it is almost guaranteed that it will remind you of your college/university days. Unfortunately, I don't remember anything about th...more
What I did not like about this book is the way it is put together. Apparently Patchett's text alone, even double-spaced, would be no more than a bro...more
"Sometimes the circumstances at h...more
I had forgotten how much I enjoyed Ann Patchett's writing in Bel Canto, and I am excited to rediscover her and plan to read several of her novels this year.
"What Now?" is a short Commencement Address that she gave at her alma mater - Sarah Lawrence.
It is full of good advice for anyone.
My favorite passages:
"And sometimes, we don't realize what we've learned until we've already known it for a very long time."
"I never stop having to learn: to pay attention to the thing...more
Less than one hundred pages in length, What Now? can easily be read in one sitting. Using anecdotes from her own life, Patchett offers many simple truths and life lessons that will inspire anyone at a crossroads, not just newly-minted graduates.
As a recent retiree, I recall facing the What Now? quest...more
What Now? is an extended version of a commencement speech Ann Patchett gave at Sarah Lawrence. I loved it because I love commencement speeches and I love Ann Patchett. It gives a lot of reassurance for not knowing what you're going to do in life, and a lo...more
Like I said, it's short - I...more
"Sometimes the circumstances at hand force us to be braver than we actually are, and so we knock on doors and ask for assistance." pg.20
"It was for me the start of a lesson that I never stop having to learn: to pay attention to the things I'll probably never need to know, to listen carefully to the people who look as if they have nothing to teach me, to see school as something that goes on everywhere, all the time,...more
Sometimes the best we can hope for is to be graceful and brave in the face of all the changes that will surely come. It also helps to have a sense of humor about your own fate, to not think that you alone are blessed when good fortune comes your way, or cursed when it passes you by. It helps if you can realize that this part of life when you don’t know what’s coming next is often the part that people look back on with the greatest affect...more
It would be easy to dismiss this book as a typical commencement speech. It is typical in how it details some of the pivotal events and people who influenced and changed the author's life at Sarah Lawrence and beyond. The message is typical as it questions the future and as the author asks the predictable questions such as what and who will I become?
But the book reaches deeper as the author de...more
It is for this reason that I first picked up What Now? while at t...more
Listened to on the Overdrive media app read by the author herself; rented from the library; all done online from the comfort of my chair. I'm going to sit and stare for a bit.
The book builds upon a commencement address Ms. Patchett gave at Sarah Lawrence College. But I found it a thoughtful narrative to anyone starting a new moment in their life. Ms. Patchettt is both witty and candid. She tells her own story and offers a clarity to the reader.
One of my personal favorites: "Sometimes the best we can hope for is to be graceful and brave in the fa...more
It's a good metaphor for her overarching point that listening and learning go hand in hand. Sometimes we're not ready the moment someone else expects it, and that's OK.
The speech isn't life altering,...more
I enjoyed learning more about how Patchett became a writer. There is some overlap with the stories she shared in her book Truth & Beauty, but I still enjoyed learning more about her background. This book would be perfect for a graduation gift. I wish there was a different version of this book w...more
She moved to Nashville, Tennessee when she was six, where she continues to live. Patchett said she loves her home in Nashville with her doctor husband and dog. If asked if she could go any place, that place would always be home. "Home is ...the stable window that opens out into the imagination."
Patchett attended hi...more