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Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose
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Book of the Month > April Book - Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose

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message 1: by Courtney (new)

Courtney | 300 comments Mod
Share your thoughts on Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose by Joe Biden here!

"In November 2014, thirteen members of the Biden family gathered on Nantucket for Thanksgiving, a tradition they had been celebrating for the past forty years; it was the one constant in what had become a hectic, scrutinized, and overscheduled life. The Thanksgiving holiday was a much-needed respite, a time to connect, a time to reflect on what the year had brought, and what the future might hold. But this year felt different from all those that had come before. Joe and Jill Biden's eldest son, Beau, had been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor fifteen months earlier, and his survival was uncertain. "Promise me, Dad," Beau had told his father. "Give me your word that no matter what happens, you're going to be all right." Joe Biden gave him his word.

Promise Me, Dad chronicles the year that followed, which would be the most momentous and challenging in Joe Biden's extraordinary life and career. Vice President Biden traveled more than a hundred thousand miles that year, across the world, dealing with crises in Ukraine, Central America, and Iraq. When a call came from New York, or Capitol Hill, or Kyiv, or Baghdad -- Joe, I need your help -- he responded. For twelve months, while Beau fought for and then lost his life, the vice president balanced the twin imperatives of living up to his responsibilities to his country and his responsibilities to his family. And never far away was the insistent and urgent question of whether he should seek the presidency in 2016.

The year brought real triumph and accomplishment, and wrenching pain. But even in the worst times, Biden was able to lean on the strength of his long, deep bonds with his family, on his faith, and on his deepening friendship with the man in the Oval Office, Barack Obama.

Writing with poignancy and immediacy, Joe Biden allows readers to feel the urgency of each moment, to experience the days when he felt unable to move forward as well as the days when he felt like he could not afford to stop.

This is a book written not just by the vice president, but by a father, grandfather, friend, and husband. Promise Me, Dad is a story of how family and friendships sustain us and how hope, purpose, and action can guide us through the pain of personal loss into the light of a new future."

message 2: by Lance (new)

Lance (sportsbookguy) Interesting to choose this book given the current headlines...

message 3: by Courtney (new)

Courtney | 300 comments Mod
Lance wrote: "Interesting to choose this book given the current headlines..."

We voted on this a few days before the current news broke about the former Vice President, so it will be interesting to see if that shapes our perspective on this book at all.

message 4: by Lance (new)

Lance (sportsbookguy) And...I'll finally be joining in this one. Now if I only remember to place a hold for a copy...

Sheri Vincent | 51 comments I liked this book. I thought it was very interesting. There were so many things I really didn't consider when looking at a political or public figure. I found the Biden family to be an amazing family. What strength and love they all have/share. They certainly have endured an awful lot of heart ache. My perspective hasn't changed about Biden at all. I think he is an incredible human being and would love to see him become President!

message 6: by Lance (new)

Lance (sportsbookguy) Got a copy! I borrowed the e-book from NYPL (shhhh...don't tell Daniella, but their copy was ready!) Will be starting it either tonight or tomorrow.

message 7: by Courtney (new)

Courtney | 300 comments Mod
Well, I made the HUGE mistake of reading this book at work during my lunch and having to fight back tears in the last chapters of this book.

Whenever I read autobiographies, I try to take them with a grain of salt because I always feel like the person is not going to give a fair and objective view of things - they're going to share things how they saw them which may not be the whole story. And of course, they're going to try and make themselves look good. I felt like Biden did this a little bit. However, I tried to concentrate more on the story of him and his family.

I will say that I had no idea Biden had suffered so much loss in his life, and I respect his strength and determination to keep moving forward and not let the past or his grief swallow him. I was very impressed with his writing - it got a little dense for me at times when he was describing military things, but overall, the book had a good pace, and I enjoyed his writing style.

With Biden's announcement to run for president, and knowing more about why he made the choices he did after his son's death, this book gave me a slightly different perspective on his decision than I think I would have had if I didn't read it.

Finally, what I was most impressed and touched by during the course of the book was Beau Biden's strength, determination, and hope.

message 8: by Courtney (new)

Courtney | 300 comments Mod
Sheri wrote: "I liked this book. I thought it was very interesting. There were so many things I really didn't consider when looking at a political or public figure. I found the Biden family to be an amazing fami..."

I think it's hard to remember that politicians are just human sometimes. They all have sides that the public never sees, and I appreciated the glimpse into Biden's struggles.

Sheri Vincent | 51 comments So true Courtney!

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