I listened to the audiobook version read by Tina Fey. I really enjoyed listening to it as it contained a clip or two from Saturday Night Live, and I gI listened to the audiobook version read by Tina Fey. I really enjoyed listening to it as it contained a clip or two from Saturday Night Live, and I got the impression that there were little snippets that were added to the audiobook or were more effective being read outloud rather than reading. I am not a huge fan of memoirs, so I really don't think I would have enjoyed this book if I had read it, but for a road trip to Montreal and Ottawa, the audiobook version was very entertaining. ...more
This was another audio book "read" for me. I've always been interested in Bethany's story - what a courageous and confident young woman! To be fair toThis was another audio book "read" for me. I've always been interested in Bethany's story - what a courageous and confident young woman! To be fair to my low rating, I am not necessarily the target demographic for this book...
Good for Bethany for writing this book! But the writing was a little too "young" for me (there's only so many times I could hear the words "totally awesome" or "super cool", especially in the tone the reader was saying it....). I also wasn't "super" interested in hearing all the details about the production of the film (I got tired of Bethany insisting that she never thought she would be a celebrity).
This book seems like it would be great for a teen to read, but it wasn't the best audio book for me (i.e. the list of surfing terms wasn't really what I was looking for...). I would have liked to hear more about how she overcame obstacles and less about her "fame" (i.e. what shows she appeared on, etc.)....more
I have such a difficult time reviewing memoirs... I even took a couple of days after finishing this book trying to figure out what I wanted to say aboI have such a difficult time reviewing memoirs... I even took a couple of days after finishing this book trying to figure out what I wanted to say about it... In the end, I read some other reviews and want to point you to theirs because they say how I feel about the book especially in terms of 1) Moroney's consistent mentioning of "losing her baby" (when it only seemed to me that her cycle was merely a couple of days late); 2) her need to know the names of the victims; 3) the book as a positive tool for encouraging change in the judicial and victim support systems.
I really want to be able to rate this book higher... I really do! But I think I've come to learn that I just don't enjoy memoirs... I thought I wouldI really want to be able to rate this book higher... I really do! But I think I've come to learn that I just don't enjoy memoirs... I thought I would really enjoy this book (what's there NOT to love about reading about books, small town living, and craftiness?). And while many of the stories were humorous and entertaining, I just found myself... not caring? That's a harsh way to put it, but I don't know how to put it any other way? Not that I have to encounter something profoundly life changing in every book I read, but I found myself just wanting to get through this book and onto something else.
This might sound contradictory to what I've already said, but one part of the book that really spoke to me was the author's reflection on graduate level reading: "For instance, it's a documented phenomenon that people who survive extended periods in graduate school find they can't read for pleasure any more - at least for a while. Finishing my Ph.D., I realized with horror that a pastime that had sustained and encouraged me since the age of three had been crushed by the weight of so many pages read purely for informational gain. Too many books addle the brain, indeed. Trying to get through even the lightest of fiction, that winter of my post-doctoral discontent, I found myself repeatedly skimming for basic plot and meaning, using the same techniques I'd mastered for academic survival. No longer possible the slow savoring of book, wine, fireplace, cat and couch; now it was grasp the gist and move on. Many post-docs have similar tales of woe." Upon reading this, I felt guilty, for I found that I was skimming this book for the most part. So I thought to myself "savor her words, drink in the story..." But very quickly I found myself skimming again... I wish I could blame it on her suggested idea of being in a graduate reading funk... But despite tedious readings for my own graduate work, I do not find myself struggling to enjoy a good novel (or even non-fiction, for that matter, which I also love to read!). So back to skimming I went...
I really did want to enjoy this book more. If nothing, this book has made me want to take a road trip to Big Stone Gap, Virginia to visit her store! ...more
Somaly Mam's book is one of courage and determination. A survivor of sex trafficking, Somaly Mam now works to rescue others. The stories she shares arSomaly Mam's book is one of courage and determination. A survivor of sex trafficking, Somaly Mam now works to rescue others. The stories she shares are devestating. There were times when what I read made me want to scream and cry. The injustice and devestation of what so many girls face around the world is heartwrenching. I think anyone who read this book would be spurred into wanting to act in the anti-slavery movement, but that's one thing this book lacked - practical suggestions to those who wanted to become more involved in the abolitionist movement. Somaly Mam fails to point out that trafficking is prevalent in countries around the world including Western regions like Europe and North America. While I understand that her book and experiences focus on slavery in Cambodia, I wish Somaly Mam would have provided more recognition that sex trafficking is a global issue and provided some suggestions on how to be an abolitionist in your home country. The book provided a perfect platform to spur others into action; it details horrific stories that move peoples' hearts, but then fails to use the opportunity to direct the reader's compassion and desire to act....more
Randy Christensen's work in Phoenix is inspiring, and I enjoyed learning about the Crews'n Healthmobile program. The book doesn't go into great detailRandy Christensen's work in Phoenix is inspiring, and I enjoyed learning about the Crews'n Healthmobile program. The book doesn't go into great detail about the logistics of the program (i.e. start-up, administrative details, etc.) but provides enough detail for insight and understanding, and I appreciated this. Instead, he focuses more on his interactions with homeless youth. These stories include both joys and heartbreak. Working with at-risk individuals can be so incredibly rewarding. But it can also bring tears and heartache. Dr. Christensen's journey with coming to terms with the fact that he cannot help everyone is touching. Those of us in helping professions will always remember those I call "the ones who got away." They change your life forever, and often drive you to work harder. Dr. Christensen says (p. 139) "This was the hardest part, I thought. There were going to be times I couldn't help everyone. I knew if I dwelled on these losses, I could become incapable of helping the next child. At least that is what I told myself." With many of the youth mentioned in Ask Me Why I Hurt, you learn what became of them. But not all of his stories are like this - there are youth he mentions who simply disappear from the book, and this is because they disappear from his life too. I don't know about Dr. Christensen, but these are usually people who haunt my thoughts the most as I wonder what has become of them and how they are doing...
This book is more than Randy Christensen's work with homeless youth in Phoenix; it's a touching book about balancing your life calling (i.e. career) and those who love and support you. Beyond his work, Dr. Christensen also spends much time in the book describing how his home life was impacted by his work and, just as importantly, how his home life affected his professional outlook. As someone who works in social justice issues, I really appreciated his insight - how his marriage was impacted by his demanding job, the support of his family, etc. In the work that I do, I am blessed to have a husband who supports all that I do, and Dr. Christensen's candidness on his struggles with being present at home as a father and a husband was really important for me to read. ...more
I can't bring myself to rate this book, but I will review it! I can't allot this book stars because the process of writing this book was a huge part oI can't bring myself to rate this book, but I will review it! I can't allot this book stars because the process of writing this book was a huge part of Jaycee Dugard's therapeutic journey, and I just can't bring myself to "rate" her story.
This was quite an emotional and intimate story. The story is graphic and disturbing. But after many chapters, Jaycee often included a "reflection" on what was written. This mainly included relevations of thoughts and feelings that she experience while writing her story.
I am glad I read this book because it gave excellent insight of her story from the abductee's perspective. And it is evident that Jaycee continued to work through her thoughts and feelings throughout writing this book. Not only did writing this story contribute to her therapy and process of healing, but Jaycee had written in her journal that she wrote while she was held captive that she dreamed of writing a best seller book. After all she has been through, I'm glad that she was able to pursue her dream of writing. That being said, it wasn't the best written book I've ever read, but neither did I except it to be so with the amount of trauma she has experienced and the lack of formal education she has received. I really appreciate that it was not edited to the point where it would be obvious that it wasn't Jaycee Dugard's voice.
It is also evident that there are many issues that she has not completely worked through yet; for example, she mentions countless times that her relationship with her step father was not very good. While this is an important aspect to consider while reading the book, the number of times she mentioned it was just uncomfortable.
After reading the book, I read more about her abduction through articles, etc. There were details that I found interesting that weren't included in A Stolen Life or weren't elaborated clearly (for example, apparently her step father saw the abduction from afar and tried to pursue the car, and her visit to the parole office and her subsequent discovery was confusing the way she described it). I think it would be beneficial to supplement this book with another book written from the perspective of law enforcement or her family to learn more about the abduction, search, and discovery. ...more