Erika B. (SOS BOOKS)'s Reviews > The Rent Collector

The Rent Collector by Camron Wright
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's review
Jul 30, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: inspire-me, favorites
Read from July 26 to 30, 2012

4.5/5 stars! Wowza! This book was fabulous! It's poetry! Based on the true story of Ki Lim and Sang Ly who live with their sickly son, Nisay, in a municipal waste dump in Cambodia. Life is a daily struggle as they collect trash to trade for money so they can eat barely enough food and pay rent to their cranky rent collector. The dump is a dangerous place with the danger of gangs, combustible piles of trash, and the big dump trucks who don't care if you get in their way. Sang Ly longs for a better life for her family. Redemption comes in many forms in this book where people are not who they seem and it's not where you are but who you are that really matters. And my favorite character in the story is the infamous rent collector, Sopeap Sin. You have to read this book for her! I can't go in depth without being super spoilery! Nothing worse than spoilers! The main thing that I LOVED about this book was the love of reading and literature! Knowledge is power! This books main theme is hope and anyone can rise from the ashes even in the dumps of Cambodia! I say again-read this book! You won't be sorry! :D

Notable quotables which you feel free to skip but they are amazing and I want to remember them- :)

"Sang Ly, we are literature-our lives, our hopes, our desires, our despairs, our passions, our strengths, our weaknesses. Stories express our longing not only to make a difference today but to see what is possible for tomorrow. Literature has been called a handbook for the art of being human." -pg.93

""The girl's name is different and her circumstance will vary. However, the story's message is the same. She is Ye Xian in China, Tattercoats in England, Aschenputtel in Germany, Critheanach in Scotland, Nyasha in Africa, Cinderella in North America-which story is probably the most well-known-and the list goes on and on." She can see by my face that my tired brain is working hard to process her comments and so she decides to make it easier for me. "Sang Ly, the desire to believe, to look forward to better days, to want them, to expect them-it seems to be engrained in our being. Whether we like it or not, hope is written so deeply in our hearts that we just can't help ourselves, no matter how hard we try otherwise. We love the story because we are Sarann or Tattercoats or Cinderella. We all struggle with the same problems and doubts. We long for the day when we'll get our own reward. We all harbor hope-"" -pg. 126

"I'm suggesting writers can't help themselves," she says. "Our trials, our troubles, our demons, our angels-we reenact them because these stories explain our lives. Literature's lessons repeat because they echo from deeper places. They touch a chord in our soul because they're notes we've already heard played. Plots repeat because, from the birth of man, they explore the reasons for our being. Stories teach us to not give up hope because there are times in our own journey when we mustn't give up hope. They teach endurance because in our lives we are meant to endure. They carry messages that are older than the words themselves, messages that reach beyond the page." -Pg. 127

"The poet Hunt said, 'There are two worlds: the world that we can measure with line and rule, and the world that we feel with our hearts and imagination.'" -pg. 175

"I am here today to tell you of a fable. After I finish, some of you may whisper that it is not true. You may say that my words are made up, that my story is nothing but a myth-and you may be right. But as a wise and great teacher once explained so patiently, all good stories-stories that touch your soul, stories that change your nature, stories that cause you to become a better person from their telling-these stories always contain truth." -pg.265

Love Begins by Joni Buehner

If I were the trees...I would turn my leaves to gold and scatter them toward the sky so they would circle about your head and fall in piles at your you might know wonder.
If I were the mountains...I would crumble down and lift you up so you could see all of my secret places, where the rivers flow and the animals run you might know freedom.
If I were the ocean...I would raise you onto my gentle waves and carry you across the seas to swim with the whales and the dolphins in the moonlit you might know peace.
If I were the stars...I would sparkle like never before and fall from the sky as gentle rain, so that you would always look towards heaven and know that you can reach the stars.
If I were the moon...I would scoop you up and sail you through the sky and show you the Earth below in all its wonder and beauty, so you might know that all the Earth is at your command.
If I were the sun...I would warm and glow like never before and light the sky with orange and pink, so you would gaze upward and always know the glory of heaven.
But I am me...and since I am the one who loves you, I will wrap you in my arms and kiss you and love you with all of my heart, and this I will do until...the mountains crumble down...and the oceans dry up...and the stars fall from the sky...and the sun and moon burn out...And that is forever.

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07/27 page 100
02/07 marked as: read
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