Ok, so, I can see this book is one you either love or hate...but I, oddly, fall somewhere in the middle.
First I will start with the positives; this boOk, so, I can see this book is one you either love or hate...but I, oddly, fall somewhere in the middle.
First I will start with the positives; this book does outline some very basic understandings that many people probably NEED to understand (however, most forward-thinking, open-minded people probably already know most of these things to be true). I think, based on those truths alone, I MAY (with some hesitance) recommend this book to a person who I felt needed a bit of a "lesson" on the realities of poverty.
That being said, however, I still have some reluctance to recommend the book, mostly because of the "solutions" it offers. Ruby Payne seems to look at the world through a very privileged mindset and her misunderstanding of those in poverty (which she has clearly never experienced herself) is quite offensive and demeaning (though I can tell that was not her intention). She, instead, places the burden on those who are already bearing the brunt of it; she essentially wants to indoctrinate all the impoverished people on the ways they need to act in order to move out of poverty and into the paradisal/Utopian middle class.
So, while the book DOES provide a framework for understanding poverty, it does NOT offer any helpful solutions for bridging gaps, changing minds, or offering assistance to those with the most need...nor does it place any blame on the sources and factors that continue to perpetuate poverty in our society, which is incredibly disappointing to me (and, in some ways, very classist, and, inherently, racist)....more
I am entirely conflicted by this book. I read it for a book club, and, as we were discussing the book, I had the hardest time actually articulating hoI am entirely conflicted by this book. I read it for a book club, and, as we were discussing the book, I had the hardest time actually articulating how I felt about it.
The first half of the book is an entirely different book than the second half. The first half is long, drawn out, and a bit boring (to be fully honest). At first the characters seem entirely plain, uninteresting, and even left me wondering why this book was getting so much hype. I think my book club is the only reason I didn't put it down and stop reading it.
Then the second half of the book comes, the story picks up, and the characters blossom (if you can call the revelation of major psychological issues "blossoming"). While the reader figures out, pretty quickly, on their own, what the ending is likely to be, you are still hooked because of the complexity of Amy's character. I was never fully surprised by her (because she is just THAT crazy) but I still wanted to know, truly, what she was capable of. Then Nick's character starts to make you question just how innocent and stable he is, too (almost like these characters were meant for each other, huh?). These characters are twisted, and I do respect Flynn for writing such complex personalities for them.
That being said, I can't really say I "liked" the book a whole lot, or would even recommend it to anyone. I've been told you either love this book or you hate it...but I am somewhere in the middle. I suppose I am just entirely indifferent....more
I should have known I wouldn't like this simply because, even as a child, I never much liked the writings of Mr. Lewis. But this was bad...this was veI should have known I wouldn't like this simply because, even as a child, I never much liked the writings of Mr. Lewis. But this was bad...this was very bad.
By about 10 pages in the author had already repeated the same concept about three times. At first I was following his reasoning (not to say I agreed with it, however, I could understand how HE believed it), but then he just kept reiterating the same point, one that isn't even all that difficult to understand (which, if it were, would at least warrant the repetition), almost as if he was trying to get himself to believe it.
He is quite vague, makes a lot of really nonsensical statements, and seems quite pompous (I just imagine him sitting there, chest puffed out, explaining all this as if he is the smartest and most philosophically evolved being on the planet).
Honestly, I couldn't finish the book. I tried skipping ahead to see if he stopped repeating himself and finally said something I could latch on to, but I wound up empty handed.
Ultimately, this book reminds me of that concept that human beings will find proof/existence of whatever it is they believe in or whatever argument they are trying to make. Well, that is the case here. Mr. Lewis apparently thinks his thoughts and ideas are grand and they are surely proof of God and provide reason for being a Christian...which, of course his thoughts and ideas prove that, because he DOES believe in God and he IS a Christian. Even as someone who believes in God, I found this all just too much to handle. I definitely wouldn't recommend this book to anyone, especially someone who already has questions or is examining their beliefs; surely it would only turn them in the opposite direction....more