Monday, May 28, 2012

Hole In My Life

by Jack Gantos
May 2012

I've been seeing this book on the library shelves for years. It never appealed to me. You can't judge a book by its cover, but I did just that.
It wasn't until I listened to Dead End in Norvelt  written and narrated by Gantos that I took another look at it. A friend told me about it.

This is a memoir about the time Jack Gantos spent in jail for smuggling drugs.  He was just out of high school and fell in with the wrong people. Gantos wanted to be a writer, but he had no money and his parents were near financial ruin.  In 1972 he was offered $10,000 to help sail a boat into New York and help sell the cargo of hash.  It was one of those "just this once" deals.  Then he'd take the money and get into a good writing program.
Well, we know the rest of the story. That's prisoner Gantos on the front cover of the book.  We also know the rest of the rest of the story. He's now a successful author and not a drug dealer. So there's a lesson to be learned from this book. As a matter of fact, the first time I heard of this book it was when a teacher wanted to check out every copy the library had in order to get his students to read it.
It's about making mistakes, regrets, remorse, forgiveness, and moving on.  I enjoyed reading (listening to) it.  You can't judge a book by its cover after all.

1 comment:

KCM said...

What a coincidence! Just 20 minutes ago I read about this book on NPR - a list of summer reading chosen by indie booksellers.