Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Meeting Jennifer Fulwiler

Last Saturday Husband, Number Six and I traveled 50 minutes north to Watertown, SD to hear Jennifer Fulwiler speak. If the reader remembers, Husband and I both read and greatly enjoyed her recent book, Something Other than God.  

The talk she gave--to a large audience--was basically the story of the book again. Hearing it told by her, however, was far from an experience of repetition. She speaks in an engaging, intelligent manner, and the packed-full room was enraptured by her story for well over an hour! It was like having a great, well-loved book come alive! If you haven't read the book, both Husband and I highly recommend it!

Of course I took the opportunity for a couple of pictures...

With the delightful author and mother of six! 

And with good Fr, Rutten, Diocesan Vocations Director and friend
Why do I recommend the book? Here's my review on Amazon:

I just finished the new auto biography by Jennifer Fulwiler, and loved it. The FedEx truck dropped it off in the middle of the day and I haven't been able to put it down.
The book is friendly and funny. It's never preachy or arrogant. She comes across as a wonderful, amusing, sincere and humble person. Even when she describes her first prayers, she is funny, light, and yet the whole scene is true and genuine as prayer can be.
She tells the story of going from completely ignorant of everything and anything Christian--and being sort of proud of that--to someone who allows herself to wonder, "could this be true?", to a very well-read, authentic Catholic--to the point of risking her life to live her new-found Church's teachings.
Jennifer is likable. I love auto biographies and biographies but, well, the subjects are not all likable. I read a while ago a biography of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and one of Picasso, and I discovered men I neither liked nor respected. But even a conversion biography is not always likable. I respected Dorothy Day in The Long Loneliness, but I can't say I liked her. Jennifer, on the contrary, is like someone with whom you want to have a coffee, or a Margarita, and talk and laugh together!
The book is written as a novel, chapters beginning in wonderfully told vignettes, their story so interesting and well-written, and so very good. A story of sincere people who, through life's difficulties, and despite of them, look for Love, Goodnesss, and Truth. And find them, because as the book reminds us, if you sincerely look for these, you find them.
This is a good book. There is so much discussion of what makes a book good. This is one. A book that tells a great story, and so well, entertains, delivers the best closing you ever ask of a story--a true happy ending--, and leaves you a better person.
The best part? Probably her apologizing to her Mother, all that took for that step, and finding, in the mystery of asking for forgiveness, the Peace she never dreamed existed. I so loved that. But there were also so many other good parts. The whole book was excellent! I want to read it again!
Last but not least, we purchased a second copy (as our first one has been lent away...) and had it signed!


Fr. Brian T. Austin, FSSP said...

Thank you for this. Beautiful.

Ana Braga-Henebry said...

You would have enjoyed it, Fr.!

Tereza Braga said...

Enjoyed the post and your well-written and fun review. Congrats. I will look for the book. E gostei do seu cabelo, está mais bonito!

Ana Braga-Henebry said...

Oi sis! I'll be happy to lend you the book! ;-) I think you may like many things in it!