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Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy Hardcover – April 4, 2017
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“Lamott is a superb writer. Her voice is one-of-a-kind: deft, folksy, cheerfully hostile... She is witty and funny and smart... Telling stories so personal even a distant reader can relate.” —The Washington Post
“This is trademark Lamott—theological speculation, hippie slang and domestic comedy, C.S. Lewis by way of Janis Joplin by way of Erma Bombeck.” —Christian Science Monitor
“Every writer, truth-seeker, parent, and activist I know is in love with one or more books by Anne Lamott... she writes as naturally as she breathes, she explores the mysterious paths and detours of life itself, and she reports back to make the way ahead easier for all of us... I keep learning a lot from the clear and great Annie Lamott. I think you will, too.” —Gloria Steinem
“A clarion call to the better angels of our nature.” —Chicago Tribune
“Best bathtub read for me would be anything by Anne Lamott... She always makes me laugh and she embraces all the broken bits.” —Andie McDowell, actress, in W Magazine
“Mercy is complicated, but Hallelujah Anyway does a fabulous job of breaking it down so it’s easier to understand. And [Lamott] even paints visual pictures of mercy that help you feel what mercy is.” —The Huffington Post
“Some books we read for their delicious plots, but others we savor another way. Anne Lamott’s Hallelujah Anyway is one you’ll slow down to read, so exactly right are her insights. The way to feel whole, she says, is through mercy—an idea as beloved as cheese, yet so tricky when you have to apply it to annoying people. But at this exact moment, we can all agree: It’s time for kindness.” —Redbook
“Reading Anne Lamott…is like sitting down with a girlfriend you haven’t seen for a while.” —The Washington Post
“Not a book to miss.” —Library Journal
“Spiritually enhancing, life-affirming lessons . . . delivers flashes of wisdom and inspiration that resonate.” —Kirkus Reviews
Praise for Anne Lamott
“Lamott is beloved by legions for her smart, irreverent take on the human condition, filtered through her unique brand of compassionate Christianity and delivered with delicious, self-deprecating wit. Lamott goes even deeper in these essays.” —People
“Anne Lamott is a cause for celebration. [Her] real genius lies in capturing the ineffable, describing not perfect moments, but imperfect ones…perfectly. She is nothing short of miraculous.” —The New Yorker
“Lamott is funny, witty and irreverent…Her basic message is love and forgiveness…Not a bad message for any faith.” —The Denver Post
"Read this book, whatever your faith. Read it twice." —Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
About the Author
Anne Lamott is the New York Times bestselling author of Help, Thanks, Wow; Small Victories; Stitches; Some Assembly Required; Grace (Eventually); Plan B; Traveling Mercies; Bird by Bird; Operating Instructions, and the forthcoming Hallelujah Anyway. She is also the author of several novels, including Imperfect Birds and Rosie. A past recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and an inductee to the California Hall of Fame, she lives in Northern California.
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Top Customer Reviews
When I read Annie’s books, I feel like I’m being hugged by her words, and “Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy” is no exception. In fact, the words on the pages of this book are the best kind of hugs, full of love and hope and spirituality. And even though I don’t consider myself to be a very religious person, I am a big believer in love, hope, spirituality, and the comfort they bring to our lives.
In “Hallelujah Anyway,” Anne Lamott explores the complicated concept of mercy. The dictionary may define mercy as “compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one's power to punish or harm,” but Annie’s got a better definition: “Mercy is radical kindness,” she writes. “Mercy means offering or being offered aid in desperate straits. Mercy is not deserved. It involves absolving the unabsolvable, forgiving the unforgivable."
Yes, mercy is complicated, but “Hallelujah Anyway” does a fabulous job of breaking it down so it’s easier to understand. And Annie even paints visual pictures of mercy that help you *feel* what mercy is. “Mercy is a cloak that will wrap around you and protect you,” she says. “It can block the terror, the dark and most terrifying aspects of your own true self. It is soft, has lots of folds, and enfolds you. It can help you rest and breathe again for the time being, which is all we ever have.” Can’t you just *feel* those words giving you a hug?
Showing mercy isn’t an easy thing to do in this day and age, but it’s something that’s so very necessary. So many of us are struggling and hurting, and we need to be embraced and connect with each other. Because, as Annie states, “the last word will not be our bad thoughts and behavior, but mercy, love, and forgiveness.”
Sure, people come in all different shapes, sizes, colors, religions, and ethnicities. But the bottom line is, despite all our differences, we are all human beings. And we all deserve mercy. And the way we start making that possible is to accept one another for what we are. In what I found to be the most powerful line in all of “Hallelujah Anyway,” Lamott tells us: “Polite inclusion is the gateway drug to mercy.”
On the first page of Chapter One, Annie writes about “scary, unsettling times”—times “when we know that we need help or answers but we’re not sure what kind…. We look and look, tearing apart our lives like we’re searching for car keys in our couch, and we come up empty-handed. Then when we’re doing something stupid, like staring at the dog’s mismatched paws, we stumble across what we needed to find. Or even better, it finds us.”
At this point in my life, when I’m going through still *more* trying times, I truly needed “Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy.” I’m so grateful that Anne Lamott put it out there for me to find. You should go find it, too. I guarantee it will make you feel better and give you a little bit of hope for the world we live in today.
I began to underline what I wanted to remember or deeply think about. When I finished I realized I had underlined, or put a star by a word, of the entire book. Every phase, every story, every word and Bible verse became precious to me. Anne Lamont outdid herself writing this book. Did I weep at times-- yes. Did I see myself--yes. Did she give me hope--- YES. She is so mercifully human in her Christian walk. Merciful to saved the lost and dying, suffering world. I relate to her writings as if she was apart of me.
Thank, thank for your grace and mercy
I don't remember when I first began reading Anne Lamont's books; we are on opposite ends of almost every spectrum there is. But I find inside her words, a spark that attracts me to to keep reading, to laugh, to reconsider. And I am changed, softened and able to face the world differently.
Loved this book.