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I'm Proud of You: My Friendship with Fred Rogers Hardcover – August 8, 2006
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Fred Rogers, the "gentle icon" of public television's Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, taught generations of children and their parents how to express feelings and relate to others in a positive way. Rogers was also an ordained Presbyterian minister who regularly studied the important spiritual thinkers and shared his faith with an eclectic range of adult friends. Madigan, a journalist with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, became one of those friends after writing a piece on Rogers and Captain Kangaroo (Bob Keeshan) in 1995. Soon Madigan and Rogers were corresponding, and Madigan reprints here many of their letters and e-mails. They built a warm, supportive friendship, one that nourished Madigan through his self-doubt "Furies" and the difficult death of his dear brother. As Rogers grieved for Madigan's losses and several of his own, the two taught each other about the beauty of giving and receiving "unconditional regard" from a beloved friend. So close did they become that readers may share Madigan's shock at discovering that Rogers was gravely ill—too weak for a last visit before his death in 2003. Even if readers don't feel their day-to-day lives transformed by this luminous memoir, in times of grief or of loss they'll know which book on their shelf to turn to. (Sept.)
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From Bookmarks Magazine
The title of this memoir derives from Tim Madigan's request to Mister Rogers: "Will you be proud of me?" Rogers said yes, of course, and thanked Madigan for "offering so much of yourself to me." Although I'm Proud of You could have fallen into Hallmark treacle, it instead compassionately recounts the spiritual friendship that developed between the two men and offers a portrait of Rogers's exemplary character. Especially poignant are Madigan's recounting of his personal visits with Rogers and his difficult relationship with his brother. "It's here that Madigan writes most powerfully, with raw, universal emotion," notes the New York Times Book Review. Even if the memoir's message is familiar (a few critics compared the book to Mitch Albom's Tuesdays With Morrie), it is an inspiration on many levels.
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.
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But the book title promises nothing but a story about friendship, not a tell all about Fred Rogers. It is a good book in doing that job.
What does it say about Fred Rogers?
Somewhere Fred read and took to heart a quote, or something similar, attributed to Meister Eckhart, "It is not by your actions you will be saved, but by your being." By living this simple statement daily he is viewed almost as a saint in the eyes of many.
Can it be that easy?