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Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace

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The New York Times bestseller from the author of Help, Thanks, Wow, Hallelujah Anyway and Almost Everything, Lamott's long-awaited collection of new and selected essays on hope, joy, and grace

Anne Lamott writes about faith, family, and community in essays that are both wise and irreverent. It’s an approach that has become her trademark. Now in Small Victories, Lamott offers a new message of hope that celebrates the triumph of light over the darkness in our lives. Our victories over hardship and pain may seem small, she writes, but they change us—our perceptions, our perspectives, and our lives. Lamott writes of forgiveness, restoration, and transformation, how we can turn toward love even in the most hopeless situations, how we find the joy in getting lost and our amazement in finally being found.

Profound and hilarious, honest and unexpected, the stories in Small Victories are proof that the human spirit is irrepressible.

286 pages, Hardcover

First published November 1, 2014

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About the author

Anne Lamott

67 books8,561 followers
Anne Lamott is an author of several novels and works of non-fiction. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, her non-fiction works are largely autobiographical, with strong doses of self-deprecating humor and covering such subjects as alcoholism, single motherhood, and Christianity. She appeals to her fans because of her sense of humor, her deeply felt insights, and her outspoken views on topics such as her left-of-center politics and her unconventional Christian faith. She is a graduate of Drew College Preparatory School in San Francisco, California. Her father, Kenneth Lamott, was also a writer and was the basis of her first novel Hard Laughter.

Lamott's life is documented in Freida Lee Mock's 1999 documentary Bird by Bird: A Film Portrait of Writer Anne Lamott.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,452 reviews
Profile Image for Bill Kerwin.
Author 1 book81.1k followers
July 5, 2020

Somewhere in this volume of personal essays, Anne Lamott remarks that she has always wanted to write a book entitled People I Still Hate: a Christian Perspective. This comment embodies many of the virtues of Lamott's writing: witty, ironic, honest, self-deprecatory, and filled with the knowledge that grace flows from our encounters with people—each as fallible and infuriating as ourselves—and that we, through humility and forgiveness, must prepare ourselves to receive that grace.

The first two thirds of this book-- “Companions” and “Families”--could have been published under the title Lamott suggested. She narrates in clear, apparently effortless prose—another of Lamott's virtues—stories about her encounters with friends and relatives, and what those encounters tell us about human and divine love. She is never self-righteous or preachy, and she is always specific: it is precisely in the details of everyday life that the miracle of love occurs.

I like every essay in this section of the book, but my favorites are the two about her parents. In “Dad”, years after the death of a father she loved, Ann is confronted with a diary of his last days in which he wrote unkind things about her. In “Mom,” Ann eventually makes peace with her difficult mother's spirit when she gathers together with family to spread her mother's ashes. (The essay has two parts, their headings reflecting the movement from resentment to forgiveness. The first part is entitled “Noraht”, after the mis-spelled version of her mother's name affixed to the box from the crematory, and the second is called “Nikki,” her mother Norah's favorite nickname.)

The last two sections of the four--”Airborne” and “Ground”--contain accounts of spiritual experiences high and low not necessarily related to forgiveness. They are filled with fine essays, but not quite as good as those in the first two sections.

Anne Lamott--although she never uses the word—delights in the “sacramentality” of daily life. Her writing is filled with the everyday things that shape our personal encounters—the hugs we give, the food we share, the ashes we scatter—and she shows us how grace uses them to move our hearts toward Love.
Profile Image for Taryn.
1,199 reviews189 followers
November 19, 2014
I'm not sure how exactly to classify Anne Lamott's nonfiction books--they're part memoir, part religious reflection, part pep talk. All I know is I love them and I'm always thrilled to find out she's publishing another one. I highly recommend any and all of them--and you definitely don't need to read them in any certain order.

Basically, Anne Lamott is the only Christian writer I can read even when I'm completely disillusioned with the church and the people in it. No matter how jaded I am, no matter how despairing I feel at the way our human failings are destroying this precious world around us, I can always find a shred of peace in her essays. She never, ever resorts to platitudes. Tired of well-meaning but clueless people saying that God has a plan and everything happens for a reason after something terrible has happened to you? Yeah, Anne Lamott doesn't say shit like that.

I got to meet Anne Lamott on her book tour! See the full post here.

More book recommendations by me at www.readingwithhippos.com
Profile Image for Lane Willson.
241 reviews10 followers
December 24, 2014
Anne Lamott’s latest work, Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace, is beautifully written, combining honesty and vulnerability to create an inspiring strength. This is the DNA in all her writing.

However, Small Victories brings with it a truth about Ms. Lamott that I found so disappointing. Her perception of the world has in it’s lens a political litmus test that filters her entire life. It first becomes visible in her essay about dating, and grows stronger and more virulent as the book progresses. Each person that crosses the pages is quickly judged and deemed left wing or right wing, and quickly accepted or rejected.

To be fair to Ms. Lamott, my sensitivity may spring from the fact that I’m a conservative, and admiring her writing, am disappointed in my potential rejection. The male ego is never far away when rejection is at the door. Ms. Lamott is one of the rare people whose beauty is like light in that it not only shines and draws one’s attention, but illuminates and adds quality and clarity to the world around it. It is ever so much more than just being just, or smart, or any other adjective that hides the limitation it places on it’s recipient with a polite compliment.

I’m quite sad when I think about the friends I would lose were I to filter them based on their politics, theology, or any single aspect of who they are. They are the folks who force me to look at who I am and what I believe. In the process I either grow stronger in my understanding of the things I believe, or change. Those friends who share my beliefs are dear and caring to be sure, but rarely do they offer new opportunities for personal exploration. They offer compassion, understanding and grace, making that exploration safe.

I will continue to read Ms. Lamott’s work, and relish in it’s insight and understanding. I just won’t use her ideas as a part of my political platform. Regardless of your platform, read anything Ms. Lamott has written and you will be blessed.
Profile Image for Erica.
1,293 reviews424 followers
October 14, 2021
I’m not a Lamott fan (I know. I KNOW, ok?) but I’d also only ever read the articles my friends, mostly women, post on Facebook because they found those articles inspiring and uplifting. I never do. I’m always left with a bad taste in my mind after reading whatever it is she’s written. However, I’ve never given her an actual shot and when Overdrive told me I’d probably like this based on my listening habits, I figured may as well give her a try.

In this compendium, she starts most of her essays by making herself seem unlikeable and awful (they call it self-deprecating humor but I'm not sure that's what it really is) and then ending them with a “But I was human all along!” twist so that we can see she’s not awful, we’re not awful, and it’s ok for us, all of us, to be human. Either that or she learns a lesson and sees a truth.
Also, she has a lot of first world problems.

This book focuses heavily on illness, dying, and death. It's supposed to illustrate the small lights and moments of grace (see title) found in all the dark places but, to me, it sounded more like she is trying to come to terms with the things that burden her like pain and grief, love that doesn’t last and love that is overwhelming. More than anything, she seems to highlight her unhappiness with so many things. Especially George Bush. To me, it all seemed less like noticing little bits of grace and more like a laundry list of miseries with the "I suppose it could be worse" tagged onto the end.

This is how I felt most of the time while listening:
There was a point in each essay I strongly thought, “Shut up, Anne Lamott.” (I don’t really want her to shut up, she makes so many of my friends who feel broken, lost, off-kilter, wounded, and on edge feel better, terribly understood, and safe. I just won’t be able to listen to her, myself, after this, partially because I'm not a fan and also because her sleepy, afterparty-hangover (I'm not saying she was hungover, I'm saying she sounded hungover) voice grates on my nerves)

Beyond the cut are the thoughts I had while listening to each essay. In them, I'm as judgemental and snarky as she is, but without the self-deprecating humor, so there's really no need for you to read any further. They're here for my future use, more than anything.
Profile Image for Rebecca.
3,508 reviews2,507 followers
May 8, 2020
This collection has a mixture of new and classic (“Barn Raising” and “Ham of God”) essays. The thematic divisions don’t make all that much sense, but never mind. More so than in previous books, we get Lamott’s thoughts on aging and her changing family dynamic. As usual, there is a recurrent emphasis on both being kind to oneself and learning the art of forgiveness. Sometimes it seems like her every friend or relative has cancer, but this makes her sensitive to common human failings: “Bodies are so messy and disappointing. … I didn’t know that wounds and scars were what we find welcoming, because they are like ours.”

What’s more, this is a gorgeous book: it’s in an interesting font that has these fantastic curlicue question marks; the type is in dark blue rather than black, with gold initial letters to tie in with the cover’s turquoise and gold motif; and “AL” is embossed on the cover beneath the dust jacket. I always appreciate it when a book has been produced with obvious care. Lamott is worth it. I would recommend this as a place to start for people who are new to her writing.

A few favorite quotes:

“All those years I fell for the great palace lie that grief should be gotten over as quickly and as privately as possible. But what I’ve discovered since is that the lifelong fear of grief keeps us in a barren, isolated place and that only grieving can heal grief; the passage of time will lessen the acuteness, but time alone, without the direct experience of grief, will not heal it.”

“Jesus was soft on crime. He’d never have been elected anything.”

“when you do give up hope, a lot can happen. When it’s not pinned wriggling onto a shiny image or expectation, it sometimes floats forth and opens like one of those fluted Japanese blossoms, flimsy and spastic, bright and warm. This almost always seems to happen in community”
Profile Image for Kelly Hager.
3,096 reviews129 followers
November 11, 2014
I am a huge fan of Anne Lamott. There are a ton of reasons for this, but they can generally be boiled down to this: she makes me want to be a better person (especially a kinder person) and she makes me feel like it's incredibly possible for that to happen.

She's very open about the fact that she's not always a kind person herself, but she continually strives to do better (and from where I sit, it seems like she's succeeded).

I'm loving her recent books, all slim volumes on faith (this is the third; it started with Help, Thanks, Wow, which I cannot recommend hard enough).

These are books for people who are a little leery of Christianity and who think that maybe every Christian is only a little bit kinder than the Westboro Baptist people. They make me smile and cry and have faith that maybe at some point we'll start to get it right. And that maybe if the human race as a whole gets it right, we as individuals can, too.

Highly recommended.
Profile Image for Diane Barnes.
1,210 reviews453 followers
October 12, 2015
I wasn't all that thrilled with Anne Lamott ' s last two books, it seemed like she had lost her edge, just not as funny and honest as usual, almost like she was holding something back. But this one has her trademark mixture of humor and despair, mixed with a hard but real honesty. This is a mixture of old and new essays, and yes, she still hates George W. Bush as much as ever. Yay, she's back!
Profile Image for Annie.
291 reviews4 followers
July 3, 2017
This was my first Anne Lamott book and I have to say that I hated almost every minute of reading this book. I really wanted to like this book because Anne is actually a very engaging writer (which is why I gave it 2 stars instead of one)

However, I was constantly annoyed by the author throughout this entire book. Some may call it "self-depreciating humor" but it came off more like "I'm a mean and judgmental person!"-- and I just didn't find that funny.

Anne prides herself in being a different kind of Christian-- Democratic, at peace with saying the F word over and over and "disarming spiritual sincerity" (like the back of the book say). Half the book is about how much she hates George W. Bush and Conservatives. It felt like she was trying too hard to say "Look at me! Not all Christians are those awful homophobic, misogynistic Republicans who refuse to curse or question God's will!" It came off like she was trying to show off too much that she is a "cool" Christian and that was just annoying.

Again, the back of the book talks about Anne's "disarming spiritual sincerity". I wholeheartedly appreciate sincerity when it comes to being vulnerable and transparent about what's really going on in our lives and our doubts and questions about God. However, Anne's constant sarcasm felt sacrilegious and bitter to me. I feel as if Anne took the things she likes out of the Bible-- like grace and forgiveness-- and left the things she doesn't to form her own kind of distorted view of Christianity. This felt very misleading to me.

Finally, the book is called "Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace" yet the entire book feels more of a rant letter about Anne complaining about life. The book has a heavy focus on death, disease and family and while I found her writing to be very engaging and made me stop and think, I was constantly annoyed by her discouraging, bitter complaints about life.

Overall, I wanted to like this book SO badly. But I found myself constantly forcing myself to finish the book because I just couldn't deal with Anne's self-centered, mean, bitter tone. I'm disappointed to say this will definitely be my last Anne Lamott book.
Profile Image for Charlotte.
58 reviews14 followers
December 13, 2014
Only made it through the preface and first essay. Do we eventually get tired of being so tirelessly inspired? Lamott is such a wonderful character, always so warm and flawed and funny and utterly lovable—certainly that hasn't changed. But neither has anything else changed, there's no sense of progression or challenge. There are totally quotable, marvelously written blurbs, but what holds it all together just reads like a lot of filler.
Profile Image for Karla.
602 reviews7 followers
January 12, 2015
This is a collection of essays by Lamott. Some were good, some were not. I happen to agree with most of Lamott's very liberal political views, but I have a problem with the disdain she seems to hold for those who do not.
I also didn't like the superficial criticism of her mother's weight, makeup and clothes (the horror of clothes bought at "Monkey Wards")
1,889 reviews8 followers
October 30, 2014
This collection of essays is more fleshed out than her previous two. I love Lamott's casual style and self-deprecating manner. She makes grace and spirituality approachable. I particularly like the essays on her troubled relationship with her mother. Not often do you read about keeping your mother's ashes in the closet on the same shelf as your dog's ashes! There are many sad and tragic things in life, but Lamott captures them with humor and heart.
Profile Image for Ron.
761 reviews128 followers
January 1, 2015
This is maybe unfair, but Lamott annoyed me with this book. Her last one, on prayer, had me laughing and crying with relief. But this one left me kind of cold. I found her personal accounts too much like the sensational revelation of memoir and hard to identify with. I wearied of her frequent references to her dysfunctional family (her portrayal of her mother is uncomfortably harsh) and her recovery from alcoholism.

The Christianity she practices (and moralizes from) seems not very deeply informed. More like Christianity Lite. Often, there's as much spiritual insight as you'd find in Erma Bombeck.

There are many cancer stories in the book, but the cancer patient is not herself, of course, and the suffering is something she describes from the outside, as a condition that brings out people's hidden strengths and courage. For Lamott, cancer seems to render them as somehow bravely beautiful, able to stir up a ground swell of loving affection and generosity from everyone around them. The suffering of others seems to serve the purpose of moving the well to little epiphanies of compassion.

For readers actually dealing with serious illness, I'd recommend instead Lamott's Help Thanks Wow: The Three Essential Prayers.
562 reviews2 followers
November 25, 2014
I was so looking forward to reading something new from Anne Lamott, and so disappointed to discover very little new in this book. Most of it I had already read in previous books and magazine articles. I was taken completely by surprise, which I shouldn't have been. It clearly says at the bottom of the dust cover, "New and Selected Pieces." I guess I should have paid better attention.
Profile Image for Melora.
575 reviews139 followers
September 13, 2016
I think this is my favorite Lamott yet. Short pieces from over a long stretch of time (and sometimes the backing and forthing through time Does get a little confusing -- her son, Sam, is grown and a father, then back to being a preschooler, etc. -- but the confusion is minor). I really love her emphasis on forgiveness, grace, love, and acceptance. This would have been a five star book for me if it weren't for her incessant griping about the Bush presidencies. I didn't like the Bushes either, and my politics and Lamott's are roughly in the same section of the ballpark, but she just goes on. Related to this, she pigeonholes everyone she meets in these essays into "liberal" and "conservative," and seems confident that these labels tell her everything she needs to know about whether or not she can be friends with someone. I'm sure she doesn't really do this, but that's the attitude she conveys here. This little annoyance aside, these are warm, touching, funny pieces that offer a welcome reminder of the ways we can see God's love for all of us through what Lamott refers to in her title as "improbable moments of grace."
Profile Image for Alina Borger .
797 reviews31 followers
March 30, 2015
When a book starts by telling you that the worst thing you can do when you’re feeling self-satisfied, depressed, or anxious is to go for a walk with a dying friend… you know you’re reading Anne Lamott.

And when even the STORY of a walk with a dying friend has the power to drag you out of your own self-satisfied, but depressed and anxious existential crisis-of-the-moment…you know you’re glad you’re reading Anne Lamott.

I’ll keep on being glad till I’m finished reading the book, I’m sure.
Profile Image for Amy.
2,542 reviews380 followers
February 5, 2021
Disclaimer: this book appeared on a list of "books every professional woman should read" so I definitely went in expecting something about management or the workplace or sticking up for yourself in a male dominated field and instead I got...a woman processing grief and death and childhood trauma.

Then I thought, 'Maybe this is actually super serendipitous!' After all, we lost Grandma a year ago this month. And I've certainly been processing through grief and pain and death. Maybe this book is exactly what I need!

But it wasn't.

I tried, I really did. This is the sort of book my Mom and sister-in-law read. I totally get why they like this overly-wordy, emotional type stuff. Sometimes just reading about someone else processing is cathartic

But...I didn't feel it. In part, perhaps, the essay format didn't work for me. She jumps around different periods of her life (losing her father, a moment with her son, a grandson's toys) and it kept throwing me off. I kept feeling like I was reading a celebrity's memoir where they just expect you to know they married and had a messy divorce with so-and-so because of course everyone knows. But usually I don't because as my sisters will tell you, I'm chronically unaware of pop culture. I kept getting that same feeling as Lamott starts talking about something seemingly profound but then mentions her 6-year-old son and I'd be over here stuck on: "Wait! Go back a moment! Since when did you have a son?! Where did he come from?"

Not necessarily relevant. But definitely enough to throw me out of the moment. And it just kept happening.

I guess what also kept throwing me about this book is how she would shift from "here is this friend of mine who had cancer! How brave! How wonderful!" to "GEORGE BUSH" (both of them) "IS THE WORST THING EVER." And it felt like such an odd tone shift. I think she meant it to make sure feel relatable and human. But instead it feels unnecessarily political and jarring. I'm glad she can work through finding forgiveness for the gal who cut in line at the movie theater. Why can't she similarly show some grace to the president she disagreed with...?

It made a weird dichotomy. Especially with all her other language about how kumbaya she feels with the world at large.
Profile Image for Lisa.
322 reviews17 followers
November 29, 2014
I love Lamott and always will. She writes fiction and non-fiction, but I especially enjoy her nonfiction which is often about spirituality, life's struggles and finding grace amidst the chaos that is life. It's also about finding yourself amidst life's busyness, forgiveness, being imperfect, and love for family, of one's own choosing and by blood.
Profile Image for Jo.
385 reviews10 followers
February 11, 2016
Brilliant! You know how poetry and sometimes humor can cut so close to the bone? Reveal shades of life that are so exquisitely captured that you might gasp or laugh out loud or pause to savor an intensity of sweetness or presence that only the very best writing can conjure? This. I'm an instant Anne Lamott fan.
Profile Image for Hanje Richards.
572 reviews27 followers
March 29, 2015
This is my favorite book so far in the Essay Reading Project. I have been a fan of Anne Lamott for some time, and appreciate the fact that she has published a new book of essays to read just when I was becoming discouraged by the essays I have read so far this year.

Anne Lamott is also the only person who writes about god in a way that doesn't make my teeth hurt.

Does Anne Lamott understand the world in a way that no one else does? Maybe.

Does Anne Lamott have a more palatable view of god and his or her place in the universe than anyone else? Maybe

Does Anne Lamott make me believe something that I don't normally believe or make me suspend my own belief system? Probably not.

Does Anne Lamott write about the world better than most. Absolutely!

Here are a few of the gems from this book of essays:

"Sometimes grief looks like narcolepsy."

"Forgiving people doesn't necessarily mean you want to meet them for lunch."

"So we gathered around the dinner table at my house, to which we had brought roast chicken and heirloom tomatoes...along with what everyone had secretly brought to the feast, the indigestible sorrows of life."

"Then I got up to do the single most reliable, comforting, celebratory, spiritual action of know. I put clean sheets on the bed and smoothed out their crisp freshness, soft as a cool skin."

"I can usually manage a crabby hope that there is meaning in mess and pain, that more will be revealed, and that truth and beauty will somehow win out in the end."

Thank you Anne Lamott. If I could write with the achingly beautiful honesty that you do, I would be beyond grateful!
Profile Image for Rebecca.
4,555 reviews177 followers
July 18, 2016
Book Riot Read Harder Challenge 2016: Read a collection of essays. There was a lot to take in here. I really like Anne Lamott's life views, and in this book, the essay "Forgiveness" is one I need to re-read. But, oh my, does everyone she knows have cancer? I know this was nonfiction, so I'm trying to frame it as "this will be my life, too, as I get older." She reads the audiobook herself, and at first (my ears accustomed to professional actors) her almost-monotone delivery bothered me. But I got used to it and heard a certain sincerity there. These were her words.

A quote that struck me was similar to this (found on Goodreads in a different book of hers): “I was reminded of the Four Immutable Laws of the Spirit: Whoever is present are the right people. Whenever it begins is the right time. Whatever happens is the only thing that could have happened. And when it's over, it's over.”
Profile Image for MaryAnn.
27 reviews
February 21, 2015
one of my favorite quotes:
"...Saint Augustine said that you have to start your relationship with God all over from the beginning, every day. Yesterday's faith does not wait for you like a dog with your slippers and the morning paper in its mouth. You seek it, and in seeking it, you find it."
Great reminder for each new day.
Profile Image for Karen.
404 reviews17 followers
February 26, 2022
I love that I am always reassured and inspired by Annie Lamott even if I don’t agree with every word she writes. She’s just so real, so fully and completely herself, with all of her failings and strengths, loves and hates. She is the author I can most readily imagine as an instant and wonderful friend.
Profile Image for John.
706 reviews45 followers
April 21, 2017
I have a older friend who forwards me emails weekly with inspirational (to him, at least) stories and reflections that often end with a comparison between America's soldiers and Jesus. I cringe as I read them, sometimes actually reading between the fingers held across my eyes.

Conservatives don't hold a monopoly on uncomfortably mixing Christianity with politics. Anne Lamott is an incredibly gifted writer. She has a wonderful ability to tell a story, inviting you in with a jarring transparency and ironic wit. But those gifts weren't able to overcome the hand-over-eyes level discomfort at times as she mixed her liberal politics with her Christianity. This leaks out in a number of ways, including her disdain for George W Bush ("everyone I know has been ruined by Bush's presidency" Lamott grieves, and later she suggests she was suicidal because of Bush's presidency) and her unwillingness to date men who even identify as "independent"-- which she claims is the label of wolves (conservatives) in sheep's (liberals) clothes. Yikes.

The book is about small victories in our growth in grace and forgiveness. Unfortunately, Ms. Lamott's understanding of grace and forgiveness is not Christian, or at least not deeply Christian. It is rather a moralistic and therapeutic understanding. This lack of understanding is scattered throughout the book, but perhaps most evident in Lamott's explanation that Easter is about "imagination and hope." The resurrection and our hope stemming from the resurrection is grounded in history, not in our imagination. Her faith, it appears, is much more tied to the practices and liturgy (both good things) of her Christian tradition than of Christianity itself. It's unsurprising, then, to find Ms. Lamott tied in knots and holding on to petty grievances. While her transparency in sharing is endearing, it is also disheartening that she doesn't understand the power of God's grace and forgiveness found at the cross.

"Small Victories" closes with Lamott at an anti-war protest, marching and filled with hope and encouragement about this "small victory." This final picture is the crescendo for Ms. Lamott, the most palpable moment of hope in the book. "God, I love the Democratic party," Lamott swoons. That this is Ms. Lamott's greatest moment of hope, the shared experience of political alignment and effort, is for me what makes Lamott's book so empty. May we experience a hope so much grander than this feeble hope, a hope not rooted in political ideology, but in a Savior who is bringing about his Kingdom, not ours.
Profile Image for R.C..
339 reviews6 followers
December 21, 2014
Note: If you are a fan who has read all Lamott's previous books, you might want to skip this one simply because about half of it is material from the other "thoughts on faith" books.

It is all good material, quintessential Lamott, written with sympathy and honesty and love. (I do warn that it is a bit depressing, as so much of the "victories" described were about her friends and family's diseases and deaths.) But it really was a mishmash of things, presented out of chronological order, so sometimes the text would mention a son who was a teenager, then a young child, then a father himself.... Also, some of the material was showing its age. The book included (again) essays about the war in Iraq and Bush II's presidency, which were good stories, but republishing something so steeped in the politics of ten years ago seems odd.

Even if I'd seen the little "new and selected essays" description, I think I would have been surprised at how MUCH of the material repeats. Why would you release a book that is half material that is still in print elsewhere? Between this half-new book and the two tiny Stitches/Help, Thanks, Wow books (two small books released at the same time, but both at full hardcover price) having come out last year, I have to wonder if the publisher is trying to stretch material to sell more books.
Profile Image for Kathryn.
3,080 reviews28 followers
October 1, 2015
First sentence: The worst possible thing you can do when you're down in the dumps, tweaking, vaporous with victimized self-righteousness, or bored, is to take a walk with dying friends. They will ruin everything for you.

Favorite quote: My pastor, Veronica, says that peace is joy at rest, and joy is peace on its feet, and I felt both that weekend.

This is my first Anne Lamott book and it was pure joy to read. Her take on the daily living of our lives is so well written, that I found myself commenting out lout, "that's right!". Her religious views and her politics are both very vibrant in her life both of which are not in mine yet I still found this book wonderful. It goes to show we can all come from different places in life and still find a common ground.
Profile Image for Amy Oechsner.
292 reviews2 followers
March 25, 2015
I didn't like this book. I have never read Anne Lamont and I don't think I ever will again. She is very liberal, which I am not. She tried to be funny, but it wasn't. She wants so bad to be an intellectual and I felt that she is the type of person I would loathe to have in my life. I felt like she feels she is the better person in every situation, but I can tell you right now, she has a lot more work to do on herself. I can honestly say, I hated this book.
Profile Image for Betsy.
592 reviews6 followers
March 2, 2015
It was not 100% new material; otherwise I probably would have given it the fifth star. It is honest, wise, heartrending, and at times laugh out loud funny. She is always good company for the journey.
Profile Image for Rick.
Author 113 books1,009 followers
January 13, 2016
Reading Ms. LaMott is like sitting down with a very wise, yet unpretentious, friend. This book is life-affirming, speaks to kindness and compassion, and directs us toward human connectedness without ever being preachy.
Profile Image for Janice.
75 reviews23 followers
August 27, 2017
I love Anne Lamott... She is so real! I enjoyed reading this book thru twice and I definitely want to live life spotting these improbable moments! Life is hard and we are all in this together. So let's help each other find the grace and be always asking and looking with new eyes!!
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