Book reviews by Jerry Waxler
I am delighted to read a recent blog post “Two inspiring memoirs about suffering” by Jerry Waxler, an American author, teacher and advocate for the personal value of memoir to transform our lives.
As well as Trapped Jerry reviewed Sixtyfive Roses, an account of the life and death of a dearly loved younger sister from cystic fibrosis. (Who knew all about her ailments from an early age: in her infancy Sixtyfive Roses was the closest she could get to pronouncing cystic fibrosis.)
As Jerry recommends Sixtyfive Roses so highly, I am reading this memoir on my kindle at the moment, and find it a clear and compassionate exploration of the life of a whole family faced with the challenges of life-long illness and the loss of a beloved family member. (I shall review it again when I have finished reading it.)
In his review, Jerry writes ‘ each author climbs to the best parts of themselves by enduring the hardship they encounter along the way.‘ Though I am naturally inclined to resist the conclusion that I am ‘lucky’ to have had my ‘disability’ experiences, he very neatly sums up why any of us might endure annoyance, pain and sorrow, and then be able to look back on our less wonderful experiences in a spirit of resignation and acceptance.
Perhaps I can say, I am very pleased to have come this far, and inexpressibly grateful that I shall never have to go back again. So often, ‘luck’ is more obvious in retrospect, if we manage to keep body and soul together in the meantime. I know I am very, very lucky to be where I am now, and I believe that writing my memoir has helped me to reach a peaceful place. The love and support of my friends, family, readers and colleagues is a precious part of that achievement.
Jerry teaches memoir writing, and is passionate about his craft, so I am delighted that he has not only read and enjoyed my story, but is able to review it so favourably. Thank you so much, Jerry. I am delighted and touched by your article, and all your positive comments, which I hope will help Trapped to reach an even wider audience.
Thanks for reading!