Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Rare Bird - Whiston-Donaldson

Title: Rare Bird: A Memoir of Loss and Love  

Author: Anna Whiston-Donaldson
Published: 2014
Genre: Memoir
3/5- Good. Read it, have a good time and move on. Or not.

Book Source: 
I received this book from the publisher, Convergent Books, free of cost, in exchange for an honest review.

"I wish I had nothing to say on the matter of loss, but I do. Because one day I encouraged my two kids to go out and play in the rain, and only one came home...."  

Recommended if you like: Memoirs, Christian, Insprirational, Stories of loss

What Its About: 
A mother's story of survival and hope in the face of horrible loss.

Jack Donaldson was a typical, though mature, thirteen year old that September 2011 day. He enjoyed acting, legos, and playing with his friends. Then, in a moment, he was gone. While playing outside with friends - with his mother's approval - during a freak rainstorm, he fell into a creek that had swelled to river proportions and was carried away to his death.

His parents and sister were left to struggle to come to terms with this horrible event, in light of their faith and beliefs. How could this happen? Where was God? How could he allow this to happen to such a young and vibrant life? Though each handled their grief differently, struggling to find answers, each finds peace. Donaldson even finds that she can take comfort in signs and indications that lead her to believe that Jack is safely with God.

Heartbreaking, yet hopeful.

The Bottom Line:
A surprisingly well-timed gift. Having just lost a beloved pet this past week, I joked when this arrived that this was the last thing I wanted to read. But, for some reason, I was drawn to it. And, as I couldn't focus on any other reading options, I acquiesced.

Though heartbroken, Donaldson manages to focus her thoughts on surviving and accepting, rather than hurting and sadness. Her references to God and religion are interesting and enlightening, rather than preachy.  It was actually quite helpful in my similar journey.