This was a strange little book. A very honest and sincere book. The author is obviously not a writer but an individual that feels he has an importantThis was a strange little book. A very honest and sincere book. The author is obviously not a writer but an individual that feels he has an important story to tell. As a woman who has had a miscarriage, this was an interesting story for me, and gave me some new possibilities to consider. And I appreciate that. However, the author's story of what happened to his son was more than unsettling and I can't even wrap my brain around what happened to him and how the author and his wife coped with what happened to their child. He said that he would not reveal the identity of the perpetrators, that bothered me for several reasons. 1. They were trusted people within his circle. It's important for other parents to know WHO can do this type of thing so they can be vigilant. 2. How could the parents on know? Did the child have nightmares? Did he ask not to go to these people's homes? Were there never any marks on the child? Surely, even as a 5 year old, this type of abuse must have manifested itself in some kind of behavior change, i.e., sleep disturbance, new fears, crying. I sincerely apologize if this sounds judgmental, and I'm certain that the author shared the story to help, not to be judged. But these are some questions that I came away from the story with. 3. I very very much hope that he revealed the identities of the perps to law enforcement and I hope that these sickos are behind bars and not out there continuing their evil activities. 4. It would have been helpful and appropriate for the author to say whether or not these individuals had been appropriately dealt with by the law. Also, I still don't understand how what happened to his son connects with his mother's NDE. I feel like I read two disconnected stories in one book. One that was beautiful and hopeful. And the other was horror beyond imagining. Whatever the author was trying to convey in connecting these two stories is lost on me. However, I appreciate anyone who has the courage to follow through with their need to tell their story and actually do it. So, kudos to David Asay....more
I had seen The Inn of the Sixth Happiness many years ago and was very moved by Gladys Aylward's story. So I was excited to read her actual story whenI had seen The Inn of the Sixth Happiness many years ago and was very moved by Gladys Aylward's story. So I was excited to read her actual story when my book group chose it.
Gladys' story is nothing short of inspirational, as any story is of someone who has followed their bliss and fulfilled their life's calling. I'm glad she wrote it down to inspire others.
It's a small, easy read. I'm glad to add to my "read" shelf....more
I read this book when one of my children brought it home as required reading. I always made a point to read whatever they did, so I picked it up. I diI read this book when one of my children brought it home as required reading. I always made a point to read whatever they did, so I picked it up. I did not expect to be as completely engaged and engrossed and truly moved by Jon Ransom's account of his time at Andersonville Prison.
It was inspiring the read how he maintained his humanity in an inhumane situation, in which so many people were not able to maintain their sanity and decency, by doing simple things like keeping his space clean.
It was also special to take my children on a road trip to the Andersonville, GA (we lived in Atlanta at the time) so see and experience what we had read in the book.
This book is not easy to find. And they didn't even carry it in the gift shop at Andersonville......they hadn't even heard of it! Which is shocking and sad. Because it is a real page turner of a real life story that is uplifting and inspiring even though it takes place in one of the most horrendous places on earth....more
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath leaves me with one question:
What makes a classic??? WHY is this on a classics list? It reads as little more than SP's di The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath leaves me with one question:
What makes a classic??? WHY is this on a classics list? It reads as little more than SP's diary of dark and suicidal thoughts. Granted, it was well written, the girl could write. But would this have ever been a classic had SP not committed suicide?? My guess is that The Bell Jar would be in the heaps of obscure works by little known American Authors if SP had not taken herself out sideways.
I would like to hear other perspectives if you are willing to engage in discussion.
This was a quick and easy read with depth and great writing. WOW! What a story! This book must have taken an incredible amount of courage and honestyThis was a quick and easy read with depth and great writing. WOW! What a story! This book must have taken an incredible amount of courage and honesty to write. And I so admire Jack Gantos for that.
We were all young once and we all made really stupid decisions. Most of us were lucky enough to escape those decisions with only a few scratches and a lesson learned and the ability to chalk it up to youth and naivete.
Unfortunately for Jack Gantos, his youthful lapse in judgment has horrifying consequences. And he has done an incredible job of letting us into his teenage brain and allowing us to take this unsentimental journey with him back in time.
Jack WAS a good kid. He DID have good goals. He also did not have a lot of parental guidance and support to help him get where he wanted to go. Left on his own to try to figure his life out, he made some VERY poor choices that landed him in a federal prison with all the inherent dangers there.
The moral of this story to me is the end does NOT justify the means. And Jack Gantos learned this lesson the hard way.
Perhaps this book should be required reading for high schoolers in the hopes they can learn through another's mistakes and save themselves some grief.
I'm glad that Jack Gantos finally found his life's true path and learned to walk it honestly and with integrity. But he sure found out the hard way!
I recommend this book. It definitely falls under the category "good read".
P.S. I LOVED all his references to the classic he read and how they impacted his life. I now want to read all the books that he referred to. ...more
Solomon Northrup was obviously a brilliant, articulate man that writes in such beautiful language of such a horrific experience.
It breaks my heart toSolomon Northrup was obviously a brilliant, articulate man that writes in such beautiful language of such a horrific experience.
It breaks my heart to think of the thousands of dear souls whose lives and potentials were wasted in slavery. It breaks my heart to know that there really was a Patsey whose body and spirit were broken by human devils. And there was no one to rescue her, as there was for Solomon.
It's hard to find language to express the profound read this is on so many levels. To read this astonishing account of Solomon Northrup's 12 years on the plantation of a devil incarnate.....IN HIS OWN WORDS, is an experience I will not soon forget.
This was a profound and heartbreaking book, written beautiful language. A human story that one cannot but be deeply affected by.
Even though Carmen Bin Ladin's story is not well written, it is real and honest and entirely readable. In fact, I would call it a page turner. Her mesEven though Carmen Bin Ladin's story is not well written, it is real and honest and entirely readable. In fact, I would call it a page turner. Her message is extremely important and should be read by every freedom loving citizen in Western Countries. Her description of the evils of Islam and their intolerance of non Muslims and subjugation of women is horrifying. They are VERY dangerous and if we don't pay attention, we will live to regret it....more
I couldn't put this book down for different reasons at different parts of the book. The first half of the book is a very different read from the lastI couldn't put this book down for different reasons at different parts of the book. The first half of the book is a very different read from the last half.
The first half of the book details Spencer's experience in the spirit world when his spirit leaves his body during health crises. I found this part of the book to be absolutely compelling and totally compatible with my own beliefs and conclusions about the spirit world. Therefore, it totally resonated with me and I loved it.
However, when Spencer starts talking about his visions of times to come: natural disasters, plagues, foreign invaders, translated beings, the millennial day, I squirmed my way through the book quite a bit. It is a very disturbing and uncomfortable prediction for the future. I'm not sure if I believe it, though I believe that Spencer believes it and that he really did see what he saw. I just don't know what it means.
The second half of the book really read like a dystopian sci fi with a Mormon flair. I just don't know what to make of it. Though it was a compelling read.
But beyond the believable first part and into the less believable second part, the book is full of wonderful metaphors about one's own walk to Zion within one's own heart. And I really appreciated that.
So, even though I don't take this book as gospel truth. I do believe that it is one man's truth. And it was a really fascinating read that I would recommend to others....more
This was a very easy read. Straightforward writing to tell a straightforward story of love and pain and loss and redemption and faith. Every life afteThis was a very easy read. Straightforward writing to tell a straightforward story of love and pain and loss and redemption and faith. Every life after life story has its own unique details, but the common theme in all of them is love, unconditional, overwhelming love. And that there is no need to fear death.
Death is easy, it's coming back that is hard. You can read this book in few hours. It's worth it....more
I tried to read this book a couple of years ago and couldn't stay with it. Way too dreamy and disconnected. I put it aside, very disappointed, as TTWI tried to read this book a couple of years ago and couldn't stay with it. Way too dreamy and disconnected. I put it aside, very disappointed, as TTW is a favorite author of mine.
Then, last week, I went to hear her speak at our public library and she said that she wrote LEAP as way of finding her way out of Mormon orthodoxy.
Well, of course, I couldn't resist that. So, I picked it back up again and finished it this time. Allowing myself to skim when I needed to.
It's beyond me how she connected a new personal spirituality with her traditional Mormon spirituality. But I guess that's why I love her, for the unique way her brain works. But this was a little bit beyond my ken.
She goes into "dream" sequences in which she writes whole paragraphs with no punctuation. I really really really did not like that.
She interjects a lot of phrases and thoughts from other writers and weaves them in to her own thinking and connections between Hieronymus Bosch's Garden of Delights and Mormon Theology. But you don't know where those come from until you read the notes in the back. If she could have cited, or foot noted it, it might have been easier to follow.
Of course, there are wonderful little profound and insightful gems that are totally TTW that I loved and highlighted. But you sure had to wade through a lot to get to them.
And all in all, I appreciated her journey. Unique and singular as it was. It was inspiring and fascinating. And were it not for this book, I would know nothing about Bosch or his Garden. And I'm always grateful to have my art and culture horizons widened.
I wouldn't recommend this book. But I'm not sorry to have read it....more
I read Alexandra Fuller's "Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight" 10 years ago and never forgot it, so when I saw her new book recently in the airport, II read Alexandra Fuller's "Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight" 10 years ago and never forgot it, so when I saw her new book recently in the airport, I had to buy it, even though I had already planned my reading for that trip.
I found the first part of the book (Fuller's mother's history) terribly uninteresting. Very disappointing after being so captivated by AF's previous book. But BECAUSE I had enjoyed her previous work so much, I stuck with it, skimming the pages at best. At about page 90, Fuller finally began to tell a story worth reading. And I found the second half of the book well worth the read.
The story of Fuller's parent's tenacious struggle to make a life in Africa is inspiring. Tim and Nicola Fuller pull together through so much tragedy with an uncommon amount of compassion and love for each other and a stubborn grip on their own dream of Africa.
It was intriguing to me to place where I was during the events in the book. While the Fuller's were fighting a war and struggling to keep a farm going under harsh conditions, including droughts and wars and snakes, I was an oblivious American teenager who's biggest worry was what to wear to the football game on Friday night.
When I was rejoicing at the fall of the Berlin Wall with rest of America, watching from afar on my TV, I had no idea that the reverberations would be felt on the Fuller family farm in far away Africa, robbing them of another farm, another dream.
Fuller's mother's struggle to hold on to her sanity as worked her way through grief is a heartrending and inspirational story. I'm glad that Alexandra wrote this story, facing down her own ghosts in the process. That, in and of itself it also an inspiration. I'm glad I stuck with the book. ...more
This was an enjoyable read, especially for one who was raised in the same tradition and has come to similar conclusions and places in my adult life. MThis was an enjoyable read, especially for one who was raised in the same tradition and has come to similar conclusions and places in my adult life. My favorite quote from the book,
"I am not the same kind of Mormon girl I was when I was seven, eight or eighteen years old. I am not an orthodox Mormon woman like my mother. I am an unorthodox Mormon woman with a fierce and hungry faith... I am not an enemy, and I will not be disappeared from the faith of my ancestors, I am the descendant of Mormon pioneers. Sometimes even in my own tradition I feel a long way from home. But I will keep on crossing as many plains as this life puts in front of me."