Friday, January 12, 2018

LEVI'S WILL by W. Dale Cramer

W. Dale Cramer, Levi’s Will (Bethany House Publishers, Grand Rapids, MI, 2005).

Available in Kindle, Audible and Nook editions, and on cassette tape.


Recommended by Dorinda Kauzlarich-Rupe

Relationships seem to be the main topic and theme of this book:  good, bad and at times stuck, but at other times, evolving. Family relationships can be difficult in any culture. They can be especially hard in the Amish culture described by Cramer as very harsh and critical. As he depicts it, there isn’t much room for forgiveness. You sin, you are more than chastised, but actually banned for life—from the church and, therefore, from any family member or friend not wanting to be banned for interacting with you.

Levi, the main character, sinned in multiple ways as a youngster and the book is about his life and relationships after that. It is a very interesting read. I feel, as usual on finishing a book, that I am losing some friends that I had in the characters portrayed.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

ENRIQUE'S JOURNEY by Sania Nazario

Sania Nazario, Enrique’s Journey: The Story of a Boy’s Dangerous Odyssey to Reunite With His Mother (Random House Trade Paperbacks, NY, 2006).

Available in hardcopy, paperback and audiobook and for Kindle and Nook.


Recommended by Dorinda Kauzlarich-Rupe

This story was first published as a series in the Los Angeles Times, winning the 2006 Pulitzer Prize in Feature Writing. It is a true story of one of the many youngsters who come from Central America (in his case, Honduras) and enter the US illegally. It gives graphic detail of the dangers these youngsters encounter on their trips, usually in search for their mothers who had previously entered the US illegally in hopes of earning money to send to their starving children back home. It is a harrowing, enlightening, heart-wrenching, honest tale. Nazario first learned of the children who make these journeys when her hired housekeeper brought her son to Nazario’s home and told Nazario his story. She was smitten and, although fearful, decided to do extensive research and document one child’s journey. For Nazario, that meant actually following a youngster—making the trip he made and experiencing the same dangers he confronted, including riding on the tops of trains and talking to those whom he encountered on the way, as well as interviewing him.

It is a very timely book in terms of current social, spiritual, and political issues. It helps the reader understand the reasons for these immigrations, as well as the real, sometimes deadly, dangers the immigrants experience.

I highly recommend reading this book.

[Editor’s Note: There is a link to Nazario’s TED Talk on immigration at

© 2017