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The Power Of Hope

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  237 ratings  ·  49 reviews
A powerful, inspiring memoir from Kon Karapanagiotidis, founder of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, which argues that by putting community, love and compassion at the centre of our lives, we have the power to change our world. 'I hope you take from this book the message that we all matter. That there is a place for all of us. That once we know our own voice, live the ...more
ebook, 288 pages
Published June 18th 2018 by HarperCollins
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Average rating 4.30  · 
Rating details
 ·  237 ratings  ·  49 reviews

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Jul 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is pure sunshine. If I was composing a list of essential reading for life, The Power of Hope would be on it.
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Please don't mind me, I'll just be over here starting the revolution now.

Kon's genuine, fundamental kindness and generosity shine through this book and in so much of his vulnerability I saw something of myself. In his acceptance and forgiveness of his own flaws, I was able to see and forgive my own. I read this book in a day, which is good because it leaves tomorrow free for me to start trying to change the world.
Suzie Bull
Jul 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Hands down, this is the most inspiring book I have read this year. The central message is "the power that hope can bring.. that we have to keep helping and we have to keep fighting, for all our sakes". Kon is passionate, uplifting, motivating, raw and vulnerable and every word spoken is a call to arms to make things better for everyone in the community, including yourself.
A must read!!
Oct 11, 2018 rated it liked it
An amazing human being who has, and continues to be, a phenomenal positive force for our global community ...


This was not as good a read as it could have been. The book simply doesn’t do Kon’s passion justice and this is down to the editors and publishers not pulling their weight and helping to polish the writing. Which is extremely disappointing. Kon is not someone who has dedicated a lifetime to the craft of writing, and it shows, but this is why editors exist and it seems they have failed
Jaclyn (sixminutesforme)
Oct 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Kon is one of the most inspiring people - he is full of heart, passion for life and humanity, and an unrelenting sense of purpose. All of these endearing qualities shine in this book which falls somewhere between memoir and contemporary reflections.

I did find some of the issues with the editing frustrating in that the direction and structure of this book often felt like it wandered and lost focus. While I found Kon’s experiences and recollections incredibly moving, I felt that parts of the
Sam Schroder
Aug 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thought I knew what I would be reading. As a monthly contributor to the ASRC and a long-time follower of Kon on Twitter, I was expecting an exploration of the journey that led to his magnum opus, the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre. And it is that. But it is so very much more. In this book, I found a shy and vulnerable man who has chosen to completely expose himself in order to be understood. The parts of this book about love, self esteem, body image and self-loathing will stay with me. This ...more
Dec 24, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is a complete rambling mess. The only thing preventing it from imploding into incoherence was the self-inflation of unwavering pretentiousness.
Jun 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Was feeling sick and miserable, but after reading this, I'm ready to fight the world.
Am still sick, but no longer miserable, yay. Fight the good fight!
Aug 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
as others have said the power of hope is powerful, unreserved and speaks to the very essence of the soul. Kon’s passion and work is inspiring, and he is someone to whom i can aspire to be.
Jul 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Kon is truly an inspiration. I would describe this as part memoir/part manifesto. He shares honestly some deeply personal experiences and how they have shaped his life and world view. He has done some incredible things all due to following his passion and purpose and has used his failures as fuel to grow and do better. Every time I feel despair at the state of the world I will pick up Kon’s book and be reminded about what is good.
Matthew Hickey
Sep 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
I read this book after seeing Kon speak at the Brisbane Writers Festival this weekend. To describe that discussion as inspiring is an understatement.

Frankly, the book pales in comparison to him in person, but that is a testament to the force of his personality rather than because of any real shortcoming in the book.

That said, while I’m loathe to criticise the work of one who achieves more in an average day than I have done in a lifetime, I think this book could have been improved by some more
Alan Williamson
Nov 02, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I struggled through 184 platitudinous pages of this book before giving up. It’s an endless laundry list of oppressions without any thread of connecting narrative, coherent arguments, or concrete solutions. It’s like something a child would write to Santa Claus (if that child was particularly precocious and left-wing, I guess?)

Rather than starting with Kon’s childhood, working through his adolescence and the founding of the ASRC, then talking about some of the challenges and developments that
Sophia McQuillan
This is a wonderful autobiography from Kon Karapanagiotidis, founder of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre. He is an inspiration in his ability to demonstrate resilience, keep hope in the face of overwhelming darkness, love for all humanity and an unwavering fiery passion to keep fighting for his beliefs and values no matter what. His memoir has even inspired me to continue writing my own novel about my Dad to overcome my crushing grief after losing him. Thank you Kon for this wonderful memoir ...more
Jane Camilleri
Nov 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
I certainly support the positive messages of this book. Kon has dedicated his life to helping others and built the ASRC, which are wonderful achievements. There were interesting references to Martin Luther King Jnr's philosophy but overall I found the writing style self-indulgent and repetitive. It would have been a better read with further editing and concision.
Karen Eivers
Aug 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have just read the final chapters and I’m left wishing that some kind of Oprah Winfrey’s ‘ Everyone has a copy of this book under their chair’ style thing could happen and see each and every household own a copy.
I was nodding, cheering and often moved to tears throughout. Kon's raw honesty and compassionate heart is so refreshing. We are really all more the same than different. I felt such resonance with so much of what he wrote.
At least 50% of the book is now highlighted . I feel like I’ll
Mar 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
What a truly inspirational man. Kon lays bare his heart and soul as he describes his achievements and includes reference to what he perceives as failings or weaknesses through his adult years. He talks about racism, bullying and loneliness in his childhood. Yet he was able to overcome these challenges as he established the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in 2001 which he has managed in tough times as it helped thousands of desperate people in need.

Kon is a fighter for Human Rights. He uses his
Oct 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Way back in 2005, I volunteered in the legal program at the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre. Kon was an absolute inspiration to me and I have never forgotten him. He once told me that when he first started out on his journey of compassion, he was volunteering for about 10 different organisations; I decided that this was a person I wanted to emulate! And I hope I have, in some small way, having been volunteering my way around the world for the past 14 months, and with no end in sight. So imagine ...more
Feb 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviews
Review by MAE EVANS: The Power of Hope by Kon Karapanagiotidis
3.5/5 stars

RC kindly provided by HarperCollins in exchange for an honest review.

When Kon Karapanagiotidis first sat down to start writing his book ‘The Power of Hope’, he not only saw his life in a new perspective but also made me change the way I saw myself. ‘The Power of Hope’ by Kon Karapanagiotidis is a non-fiction autobiography and self help book.

In this book, Kon recounts his life starting with his grandparents living in Greece.
Liz Murray
I recommend everyone read this book, as Kon Karapanagiotidis has such an important story to tell. He founded the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Melbourne, Australia and he and the people he works with have saved so many lives. He is a generous soul and he shares many stories that have been painful for him, he makes himself vulnerable.
The book alternates between memoir & biography of the ASRC, and pages that are more a self-help style. I feel that it could have been edited better to
This book was nothing like I thought it would be, and was all the better for it. Kon has got the be the most humble, beautiful human around and to read his words of immense vulnerability, passion, courage and hope was an experience. This book did things to me!

While Kon is well known for having founded the Asylum Seeker Resource Center, this book is not really about the center, or even refugees. It's a book about Kon's personal struggles, what he's learnt about being a man and a human being, and
Jan Miller
Dec 27, 2018 rated it liked it
There is no doubt about Kon being a good man who has endured personal struggles in his life and feels passionately about social justice. But I did find the book a bit all over the place between self help, facts about a range of social issues and the valuable things he has done for the community, notably ARSC . It is very heart on sleeve and could have done with some editing in my opinion. I would love to have read more about the Centre and more factual focus on the issues we face here in ...more
Jan 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
I thought I wouldn't enjoy this book that much simply because my childish self was like "I only like fiction" but honestly I read this book in like 3 days and absolutely loved it. The author is such an inspiring person and has done things that some people could only dream of. He has dedicated his life to helping those in need and honestly is such an inspiration. His story reassured me that there are others who see what the Australian government is doing and want it to stop. It made me laugh, cry ...more
Nov 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“The Power of Hope” is a non-fiction by Kon Karapanagiotidis, founder of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre. I didn’t know much about Kon before reading this but now have a bit of an intellectual crush on him. He writes about his youth as an introverted Greek Australian and how his desire for social justice has driven so many of his life decisions. Despite all the suffering he has seen, Kon continually speaks of hope and his belief in the human race to be inherently caring. He’s a truly admirable ...more
Julie Cohen
Dec 19, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2018
This was a good book. It was interesting to read about the origins of an organisation that I support and respect, and I am impressed with Kon's tenacity and honesty - this couldn't have been an easy story to write, let alone make public. I feel it could have had a closer edit, and it was stylistically a little one-note, but ultimately a helpful guide to being a good person. Some good practical tips on making simple changes in your own life and workplace too. I'd give it somewhere between 3 and 4 ...more
Aug 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An inspiring memoir along with a comprehensive action plan towards living an authentic life. It’s two books in one. Having followed Kon’s work over the years, and met him briefly and heard him speak, reading his personal story was not what I expected. But reinforced the genuine sincerity I felt when he met me and thanked me for my contribution (though not much) and that he was not just paying lip service but was heartfelt. Five stars for the inspiring people to care and be hopeful. But most of ...more
Sputnik Sputnik
Aug 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book. Wasn't quite what I was expecting, but was awesome. I thought it was going to be all about the ASRC and how it started, what it does etc and for sure, there's that story in there, but there's a lot more in there than that story... it's a genuine manifesto for being more human. And more than just great soundbites, Kon gets practical and includes list of actual actions we can take. Loved every page of it. And cried more than once.
Bruce Wadd
Feb 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
When you talk about unbridled passion plus ‘warts and all’ this is what you get with Kon’s story. It’s an intense read, bordered on political at times but there is no doubt as to the authenticity of this man who he is what he loves and dislikes.

Part of me is shamed to read this in the current context of refugees but I am also inspired with his desire to impact the next generation. We each need to take responsibility for our lives and our impact upon others.
Kim Miller
Jul 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Lawyer, Social Worker, Social Rights Activist, masseuse, cook, Founder and CEO of ASRC - and now author - Kon Karapanagiotidis' memoir is equal parts heart wrenching and inspiring. It's a battle cry for the weary whilst also acknowledging the self sacrifice and self doubt that has accompanied his life journey so far. For 16 years Kon's work has been a lifeline for refugees living in Australia - this memoir will bring hope and inspiration to social justice warriors across sectors.
Hariklia Heristanidis
Jul 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A brave, powerful and inspiring book which I recommend to everyone, not just in Australia, but the entire world. By sharing his story and experiences, the author offers a blueprint of how to lead a life of love and compassion. Talk about timely - as many go the narcissistic/individualistic route, here's a book that champions community and humanity.
I just loved it. Thank you Kon Karapanagiotidis!
Emma Lush
I always feel funny about giving auto-biographies ratings. I know it’s not sold as such, but there is so much of Kon’s suffering and torment between the pages that it really is a very raw telling of his experiences and how to learn from them. I couldn’t possibly put a rating onto that; I can only thank Kon for putting his heart and soul into this, and for being a guiding light for so many.
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