Review: Hallelujah Anyway by Anne Lamott

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Hallelujah Anyway, perhaps a bit paradoxically, is the literary equivalent of a peeking under the bed at night in the hopes of not seeing a monster, then – gasp – seeing one anyway. It takes our deepest, darkest desires – to be loved, to be held, to be cherished – to the table, then shines a light on the vulnerable, childish parts of us, the festering wounds in our soul that quiver and pulse when we dare to poke at them.

 

Far from being merciful, it serves as a reminder that we are all broken inside, with our own insecurities and phobias and Freudian obsessions. The author, Anne Lamott, speaks briefly of her struggles to stay sober, but fails to explain where to find this mercy she speaks of other than vaguely alluding to the Judeo-Christian God. Where is mercy for the rest of us? From whence does it spring? From what foreign land does it trickle down to rain, redeeming, upon us?

 

That being said, I admire the subtlety of this thin volume and how it did, in fact, raise some important questions for me. I enjoyed the style of writing, and while it failed to deliver on many of its premises and promises, I would rate it a solid three out of five.

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