I was prepared to sit down and read Lessons in Living in one sitting. However, the book turned oLessons In Living By Cynthia P. White
A Delightful Read
I was prepared to sit down and read Lessons in Living in one sitting. However, the book turned out to be several short stories on life lessons. It felt more like daily devotionals, so I read it that way…a story a day.
The stories are filled with insight and examples that can be applied to everyday life. The first life lesson, What I Learned from My Toro, by Dr. White, brought back memories of buying my home and being determined to do it on my own. The lessons of self-reliance, perseverance, and determination are real. The contributors share stories, some light and others heavy burdens that had to carry. Stories of perseverance and triumph and overcoming insurmountable odds fill the pages of this inspirational literary work. Whether it’s the accomplishment of learning to operate your first lawn mower, dealing with the unexpected death of a spouse, or God’s awesomeness when a mother, along with her daughter and granddaughter learn to trust God during a period of homelessness; these experiences teach the reader that at any moment it could be us…But God!
Lessons In Living is an emotional journey that I encourage others to take. It is also a great gift and coffee table read. My only disappointment in the book was wanting more back story and current updates on the pieces shared.
God Help the Child by Toni Morrison is her latest novel and the first (I believe) to be set in the current time period. The story opens with the birtGod Help the Child by Toni Morrison is her latest novel and the first (I believe) to be set in the current time period. The story opens with the birth of the main character, Lula Ann Bridewell, who later becomes just “Bride.” She is a blue-black baby with odd eyes and even odder hair texture. She’s such an aberration that her father leaves and her mother seemingly goes into hiding to protect her from the cold harsh world. A landlord finally rents them a place, but charges extra for his troubles. Morrison then reveals that it is the nineties, oh the 1890s, no it’s the 1990s. The story picks up twenty plus years later and Lula Ann is now a successful cosmetic exec who has learned to embrace her blackness by wearing only white clothing, and calling herself Bride. Although society loves her she struggles with her mother/daughter issues, which tend to hinder her adult relationships.
What should have been a beautiful love story between Bride and her lover Booker, gets muddled in several storylines that simply were not interwoven well enough to make the story flow, inevitably causing them to seem random and out of place. I wished Morrison would give us a novel that is not mired in sexual abuse, child molestation, colorism and the ever-disappearing black man, but this would not be the case. A complex love affair becomes the side-story to a child-molestation case that had an eerie resemblance to the McMartin Pre-School scandal of the nineties, and the Atlanta child murders of the late seventies, early eighties. I understood where she was trying to go using these as the backdrops for the characters backstory, the execution just wasn’t there. The book, at 178 pages, seemed rushed and underdeveloped with various characters speaking from their own perspective, but not strong or in-depth enough to tie it all together or show relevance to the plot.
I am a huge fan of Ms. Morrison’s work, but this one just didn’t capture my heart. Bride and Booker are two multifaceted characters and their story deserved so much more. I had very high expectations for God Help the Child , but it simply fell flat for me. My final rating is 3 stars.