It's never too late...
for summer book recommendations, even if it's August!
August is still very much summertime, but the dread that fills us when envisioning encroaching school days and mildly chilly weather persuades anyone who loves summer to live in the now.
Labor Day is just around the corner, and if you're hoping to make these last few weeks of summer rich in memories, we suggest you check out these great reads.
These are recommendations for anyone looking for an informative, moving story to stay with you long after summer's gone. It's also for anyone heading off on an exotic, long-planned trip with much to look forward to — except, of course, the 10+ hour flight.
We have some ideas for what might engross you during that long flight, or that lazy Saturday spent on the couch. Even during those thirty minutes of quiet time you squeeze in before bed. These are enlightening stories on the range of the human experience that demonstrate how, irrespective of geographic distance, we as people encounter and express things in much the same way. To live in this world and learn the phenomena of our neighbors near and far is to share in the universal experience!
The Fox Hunt
I just finished an amazing book, The Fox Hunt: A Refugee's Memoir of Coming to America
by Mohammed Al Samawi. The book's publisher Harper Collins
wrote "The Fox Hunt
tells one young man’s unforgettable story of war, unlikely friendship, and his harrowing escape from Yemen's brutal civil war with the help of a daring plan engineered on social media by a small group of interfaith activists in the West."
I strongly recommend this book because it gives those of us here in the West a window into Yemen, its people, politics and culture while also learning about one man's very personal journey to peace building, interfaith dialogue and eventual freedom. I was so moved by all the people who came together, working tirelessly, to save his life — Catherine
Go, Went, Gone
Go, Went, Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck is a novel translated from German that explores the human costs of the African refugee crisis in Europe. By exposing the harsh realities of a refugee group in Berlin and the futile efforts of a retired German professor who, almost by chance, is awakened to their plight, the book offers an indictment of the West's refusal to address the root causes of the refugee crisis. As a privileged continent, Europe should encourage its citizens to provide shelter and protection to those who risk everything in search of a life free from ethnic, factional and political violence. While Erpenbeck's story is squarely set in Europe, the parallels to the U.S. could not be clearer. Almost everywhere, refugees are depleted by bureaucracies, turned away by governments, cast aside by the majority and, sometimes, they are even separated from their children for days, months or a lifetime — Joan
How Fast Can You Run
I was incredibly moved by the true story of Majok, one of the Lost Boys of Sudan from the PBS documentary Dinka Diaries, who at the age of just five years old is forced to flee, separated from his family, after South Sudan's civil war reaches his home. What follows is a story of trauma, desolation and unimaginable courage as Majok treks across East Africa by foot for ten years in search of his mother. Staying intermittently at IDP and refugee camps, Majok is eventually granted political asylum in the States, becoming Michael. Yet the misfortunes he continues to face in the West remind the reader that the experiences a survivor holds are with them forever, and that hardships like these are faced by millions everyday. I recommend this book to anyone; it grounded and inspired me deeply — Tamzen
For obvious reasons, these are stories worthy of learning about and sharing with others. Books help make the world a better place!