Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Book Recommendation...

Quote for the Day:
The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it.  
~James Bryce

Though I always have at least one book going at any time...and frequently two or three (one that I'm reading and one that I'm listening to on audiobook), I haven't been sharing with you what I have been reading.  Usually, that is just because I don't think about the books when I'm blogging, or just get wrapped up in writing about other things.  

But you know there is something very special about a book when, as you are reading it or listening to it, you say to yourself "I MUST tell people about this one!!"  

And that is exactly what has happened with the two current books.

First, let me tell you about "The Other Wes Moore:  One Name, Two Fates" by Wes Moore.
Two kids with the same name were born blocks apart in the same decaying city within a year of each other. One grew up to be a Rhodes Scholar, army officer, White House Fellow, and business leader. The other is serving a life sentence in prison. Here is the story of two boys and the journey of a generation.

In December of 2000, the Baltimore Sun ran a small piece about Wes Moore, a local student who had just received a Rhodes Scholarship. The same paper ran a huge story about four young men who had killed a police officer in a spectacularly botched armed robbery. The police were still hunting for two of the suspects who had gone on the lam, a pair of brothers. One of their names was Wes Moore.

Wes Moore, the Rhodes Scholar, became obsessed with the story of this man he'd never met but who shared much more than space in the same newspaper. Both had grown up in similar neighborhoods and had had difficult childhoods. After following the story of the robbery, the manhunt, and the trial to its conclusion, he finally he wrote a letter to the other Wes, now a convicted murderer serving a life sentence without possibility of parole. His letter tentatively asked the questions that had been haunting Wes: Who are you? Where did it go wrong for you? How did this happen?

That letter led to a correspondence and deepening relationship that has lasted for several years. Over dozens of letters and prison visits, Wes discovered that the other Wes had had a life not unlike his own: they were both fatherless, were both in and out of school; they'd hung out on similar corners with similar crews, and had run into trouble with the police. And they had both felt a desire for something better for themselves and their families--and the sense that something better was always just out of reach. At each stage of their young lives, they came across similar moments of decision that would alter their fates.

Told in alternating dramatic narratives that take readers from heartwrenching losses to moments of surprising redemption, The Other Wes Moore tells the story of a generation of boys trying to find their way in a hostile world.  
 I encourage you to watch this short clip about the book and the author: 

I downloaded this book for free from my library and listened to it on my MP3 player, mostly while in the car driving to and from work.  It was a very moving book to read.

The second book is one that I am still reading, but still want to share with you because it is powerful:  "Throw out Fifty Things:  Clear the Clutter, Find Your Life" by Gail Blanke.  This book is only about 180 pages long and I am about 2/3's of the way through it right now.  It is interesting and an extremely easy read since it is written in a very casual, conversational style. 

"Our lives are so filled with junk from the past-from dried up tubes of glue to old grudges-that it's a wonder we can get up in the morning," exclaims motivator, best-selling author, columnist, and life coach Gail Blanke.

"If you want to grow, you gotta let go," is Blanke's mantra; and that means eliminating all the clutter-physical and emotional-that holds you back, weighs you down, or just makes you feel bad about yourself.

In THROW OUT FIFTY THINGS she takes us through each room of the house-from the attic to the garage-and even to the far reaches of our minds. Through poignant and humorous stories, she inspires us to get rid of the "life plaque" we've allowed to build-up there.
  • That junk drawer (you know that drawer) in the kitchen? Empty it!
  • Those old regrets? Throw 'em out!
  • That make-up from your "old" look? Toss it!
  • That relationship that depresses you? Dump it!
Once you've hit fifty-you'll be surprised how easy it is to get there-and once you've thrown out that too-tight belt and too-small view of yourself, you'll be ready to step out into the clearing and into the next, and greatest, segment of your life.
This book is also one that I downloaded from the library, but this book is an ebook that I am reading on my Nook.  I have been reading it over the past 3 days which have been work days for me (no, I haven't been reading instead of working!)  Because these have been 12-hour work days, I haven't had time to go through the rooms like she says, but I do plan to very soon.

Both of the books are interesting and life-changing in their own, and very different, ways.  I whole-heartedly recommend both books to anyone who is looking for some great reads!  :) 



1 comment:

  1. I have to have my daughter download books for me, but I want that one! soon ;)
    Right now I am cutting fabric, for quilts. It will slowly make a dent in my stash:)