Saturday, January 31, 2015

Listen, Slowly by Thanhha Lai

As a member of Amazon Vine, I'm able to review books through them, but--as I understand the terms--I'm only allowed to post my review on Amazon. Because I liked this book, I'm posting a description of the book here with a direct link to my review on Amazon. This book is a novel, but it reads like a non-fiction so I'm also posting it here.

book cover
Listen, Slowly
by Thanhha Lai

ISBN-13: 9780062229182
Hardcover: 272 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins
Released: February 17, 2015

Source: Review copy from the publisher through Amazon Vine.

Book Description, Modified from Back Cover:
A California girl born and raised, Mai can't wait to spend her vacation at the beach. Instead, though, she has to travel to Vietnam with her grandmother, who is going back to find out what really happened to her husband during the Vietnam War. Mai's parents think this trip will be a great opportunity for their daughter to learn more about her culture.

But to Mai, those are their roots, not her own. Vietnam is hot, smelly, and the last place she wants to be. Besides barely speaking the language, she doesn't know the geography, the local customs, or even her distant relatives. To survive her trip, Mai must find a balance between her two completely different worlds.

My Review:
My review on Amazon.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Last Rescue by Howard Wasdin

book cover
The Last Rescue
by Howard Wasdin
with Joel Kilpatrick

ISBN-13: 9781595555946
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Released: October 28, 2014

Source: Review copy from the publisher through BookLook.

Book Description, Modified from Back Cover:
As a Navy SEAL, Howard Wasdin survived the firestorm made famous in "Black Hawk Down" only to return to a world without support, without a mission, and soon without his family. Wounded in Mogadishu and facing a torturous journey of rehabilitation and recovery, he came home to find his marriage falling apart and his world upended. Then he met Debbie, an accountant emerging from her own trial by fire.

"The Last Rescue" is an unforgettable tale of brokenness and healing, going deep into the firing line of modern warfare, through the agony of broken marriages, and onto a path of redemption and love. With a clear-eyed view of the inevitability of heartache and the power of God's faithfulness, Howard and Debbie remind us that no matter what our circumstances, we should never, ever, give up hope.

My Review:
The Last Rescue is a memoir. Howard is the main viewpoint of the story, but Debbie gives her viewpoint of events at several points. Howard talked about his childhood and his injury in war to explain where he was coming from, but most of the book was about what happened when he returned: his recovery from his injury, his marriages, his attempts to make a living off his military skills, and finally choosing a new career--and life--path.

He was very open about admitting the ways that he was at fault in various relationship breakdowns and why he was acting that way. It was interesting to see his attitude changing from desperately wanting a loving family situation and needing to hold on to his "rock star" warrior status to slowly learning how to be a part of creating that loving, supportive family situation he craved and moving on to a new career path.

Though "rediscovering their faith in God" is in the book description, they didn't say much about their religious journey. The references were mainly about him feeling that God worked events in his life to bring healing and fulfillment and why he felt God had kept him alive. This book might interest returning war veterans who are having trouble readjusting as Howard has "been there, done that."

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.