Monday, August 24, 2009
Forgive Me: A RevGals Book Discussion
Forgive Me By Amanda Eyre Ward
reviewed by Mompriest
Forgive Me is the second book I have read by Amanda Eyre Ward. The first, Sleep Toward Heaven, I picked up on a whim at one of the bookstores during a summer vacation about 3 years ago. Sleep Toward Heaven is a story of how the lives of people, who have never met, can unknowingly intersect and effect one another. It was a startling book of loss, reconciliation, and healing.
It was no surprise then, that last spring I was drawn to a local book festival that included a presentation by Ward and an opportunity to have her sign books. It was at that festival that I picked up, and had Ward sign, Forgive Me. Anticipating a book that would draw me in as Sleep Toward Heaven had, I anxiously awaited an upcoming retreat, knowing I could luxuriate in reading the book cover to cover. I anticipated a good read, and I was not disappointed.
Forgive Me moves quickly through the life of a woman, Nadine Morgan, a journalist always on the hunt for the perfect story. A woman who, it soon becomes apparent, is really trying to find herself. The story weaves back and forth through the broken places in her life, the early death of her mother and the tragic death of her first real love. Emotionally the journalist in her has safely tucked away and glossed over the painful pieces of her life, consumed instead by the adventures of newspaper journalism and the thrill of life-threatening risks.
The story of Nadine’s life covers some of the big news stories of our generation , from the struggles of apartheid in South Africa to the violence of drug trafficking in Mexico and back again to South Africa during the trials of Truth and Reconciliation. Weaving from first person to third person, from love to loss and back to love again, the story takes on several dimensions at the same time. Like Sleep Toward Heaven this story reflects on the ways lives intersect, are broken, and, sometimes healed. It is a story of anger, pain, death, and forgiveness. It’s a story about mothers, children, and ambition. Ultimately it’s a story about Nadine forgiving herself, a process which opens her up to possibilities she never imagined for herself.
I’ve read this book two times, and I never read a book more than once. Of course, I read it the second time to prepare this review….BUT, I was surprised that I still liked it as much as the first time.
Anyway, I’m curious if others enjoyed this book as much as I did?
And, if so why? Or, why not?
There is a converation between Marsha Hamilton (author of Camel Bookmobile) and Amanda Ward at the back of the book, that looks more closely at Wards experience in South Africa.
What do you know or understand about the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa?
How does the TRC help us understand the power of forgiveness?
Is it more difficult to forgive another or more difficult to forgive ourselves?
Do you have a story about forgiveness to share?
Let’s discuss it in the comments or for a longer post, link us to your blog.
Posted by Terri at 4:00 AM