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My Beloved World Paperback – January 7, 2014
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"Theft by Finding: Diaries (1977-2002)" by David Sedaris
In one of the most anticipated books of 2017, David Sedaris tells a story that is, literally, a lifetime in the making. Pre-order today
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Amazon Best Books of the Month, January 2013: Happily, it is becoming a familiar story: The young, smart, and very hardworking son or daughter of immigrants rises to the top of American professional life. But already knowing the arc of Sonia Sotomayor’s biography doesn’t adequately prepare you for the sound of her voice in this winning memoir that ends, interestingly, before the Yale Law School grad was sworn in as the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice. Hers is a voice that lands squarely between self-deprecating and proud, grateful and defiant; a voice lilted with bits of Puerto Rican poetry; a voice full of anger, sadness, ambition, and love. My Beloved World is one resonant, glorious tale of struggle and triumph. --Sara Nelson --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.
*Starred Review* When Sotomayor joined the U.S. Supreme Court in 2009, she made history as the first Hispanic on the high court. She’d also achieved the highest dream of a Puerto Rican girl growing up in a Bronx housing project longing to someday become a judge. In this amazingly candid memoir, Sotomayor recalls a tumultuous childhood: alcoholic father, emotionally distant mother, aggravating little brother, and a host of aunts, uncles, and cousins, all overseen by her loving, domineering paternal grandmother. When she was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes at eight years of age, she knew she had to learn to give herself the insulin shots. That determination saw her through Catholic high school, Princeton, and Yale Law School, at each step struggling to reconcile the poverty of her childhood with the privileges she was beginning to enjoy. No rabble-rouser, she nonetheless was active in student groups supporting minorities. At Yale, she learned how to think about jurisprudence, but readers looking for clues to her judicial thinking will be disappointed as she deliberately demurs. She recounts complicated feelings toward her parents and her failed marriage as she advanced to the DA’s office, private practice, the district court, and, triumphantly, the Supreme Court. Sotomayor offers an intimate and honest look at her extraordinary life and the support and blessings that propelled her forward. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: A media blitz will attend the release of this already newsworthy memoir by the Supreme Court’s first Hispanic justice. --Vanessa Bush --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Which I enjoyed very much! I was amazed by Sonia Sotomayor's humble beginnings, and the heights she ultimately achieved. She states that the reality of affirmative action may have helped her get into Princeton, and beyond. Her point is that these programs do have value. However, the woman is brilliant, hard-working, and she doesn't fawn. She's competitive. She speaks her mind. And like any such woman, this earned her the sobriquet of (term I can't use on Amazon).
She became a lawyer and prosecuted child pornographers and murderers. She wore a Kevlar vest and rode with an apprehension team into the middle of organized crime. She was threatened to the point of having bodyguards for a while.
Sonia Sotomayor embodies a principle that women need to learn: boldness. Let me explain. Some cultural leaders, like Sheryl Sandberg and Amy Cuddy, and books like The Confidence Code by Claire Shipman and Katty Kay, and Ask For It by Sara Laschever and Linda Babcock, hammer the same message at us over and over again: whereas men tend to leap at opportunities even if they're underprepared, women tend to hold back until they're overprepared, thus missing out on all kinds of chances in life. These leaders beg us women to take more of a leap, with the expectation we'll catch up and excel after a while. This is what Sotomayor did, overcoming the preparation gap with diligent and energetic catch-up. And ultimately, she excelled at everything. Here's an excerpt from her interview for the first judgeship she applied for. The interviewer asked, "Don't you think learning to be a judge will be hard for you?"
SS: I took a breath to gather my thoughts, and then the answer poured out: "I've spent my whole life learning to do things that were hard for me...At Yale, the DA's Office, (the law firm), wherever I've gone, I've honestly never felt fully prepared at the outset. Yet each time I've survived, I've learned, and I've thrived. I'm not intimidated by challenges. My whole life has been one. I look forward to engaging the work and learning how to do it well."
Yet she is all too human, and because of her freely admitting her failings, weaknesses, and insecurities, she shows us how to overcome them. In fact, the drive for self-improvement motivates the author and inspires the reader.
Sotomayor, as an adult, finally tackles her smoking habit--successfully. She also learns to dance, swim, sing, enjoy exercise, and pay more attention to her appearance, even becoming a little bit stylish. Toward the end of the book, she describes her realization that she possesses a certain coldness, having been raised by a cold mother. So to change, Sonia embarks on a program where she tries to be more demonstrative, like giving and receiving (even asking for) hugs. To her joy, her mother also begins to "relearn" how to give and accept affection, and the two of them grow closer and as individuals.
I was impressed that a Supreme Court Justice could be so open, revealing her humanity this generously. I felt reassured that such a normal person, having grown up in poverty and hardship, now sits on our Supreme Court. And having read her life story (so far), I believe she is fair, and will come to work and do her ethical best every day
Justice Sotomayor is the culmination of the perfect storm: A lovely summer storm that clears out the stink and gives hope that the sun may shine in the morning.