Deena's Reviews > Breakfast at Sally's: One Homeless Man's Inspirational Journey

Breakfast at Sally's by Richard LeMieux
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Nov 28, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: poverty-social-justice-issues, autobiography-biography
I own a copy

I really feel for this guy and what he apparently went through. However, I didn't feel like I got what it was really like for him or the other people he mentioned in the book to be homeless. Maybe I'm too picky, but I kept thinking "when did he brush his teeth?" "How often did he get to take a shower?" The misery, degradation, fear, etc. that must accompany finding yourself homeless just didn't seem to come across in this book. I would have also liked to have known more about the people he met and how they felt about being homeless and how they got into that particular situation. He had "C" as a huge character in his book, but never explained much about him. Maybe it was as he said that he just didn't ask C or anyone else that many questions. I also didn't get a really good idea of why his children totally abandoned him. Either they are all very superficial (who allows their father to live in a van for a year and a half because they are ashamed of him?) or he wasn't telling the whole story. It didn't make his children look too good, especially the one that borrowed $10,000, worked for his company, and then wouldn't help him out when the company went out of business. Why didn't his son try to get him a job? Also, he never really talked about trying to get a job - he only mentions it once that I recall. I realize that he was depressed and it is very hard to function when you are depressed, but again, it felt like there were huge gaps in his story. I am not judging that he didn't get a job, I just would have liked more information on the reasons he couldn't get one - was it his age? Was it that he was homeless and hard to reach? Was it the depression that kept him from seriously looking? Besides my basic curiosity, I think if he is really serious about changing minds about homelessness, he should have included that information. If people are going to change their attitudes about the homeless, they need all the information they can get about how the homeless come to be that way and the barriers they face in getting housing, jobs, etc. I admire him for surviving being homeless and for writing a book about it. I just wish it had been a little bit more descriptive.
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