Sunday, December 5, 2010

Gar Fish and Long Gravy

Author: Alexander Devereux
Copyright 2010
Outskirts Press
Paperback $ 12.95
ISBN 978-1-59800-675-9
78 pages

“If sense were common, everybody would have it.”
A A small town in Mississippi is not where most people would expect to learn the most important lessons of life but this short memoir for Alexander Devereux proves to be a wonderful experience for every reader.

Alexander Devereux would by today’s terms be considered “at risk” as a child. Fortunately for him, he had a grandmother who taught him lessons in real life about what was important. These lessons made him a successful person due to the realistic common sense attitudes and beliefs which allowed him to grow and overcome his childhood hardships.

The lessons are learned from making mistakes and developing your personal character based on how you handle the situation. The advice from Grandmama Lia is as important today as it was to a small, disadvantaged black child.

The lessons were written first from the point-of-view for someone with a problem. Usually when someone has a problem, a wise person is not always available to share their wisdom. The advice for this small black boy is surprising as useful for everyone today as it was in his past.

This is a book of common sense and unfortunately, most sense isn’t common since we have to use the term “common sense.” Much of the sense is unusual in the viewpoint and the bluntness, also it’s logical.

Personally, I was thrilled with this book. Even in a hardship situation, the advice and approach to difficult situations are reassurances to all of us as we go about our everyday challenges. I was surprised about the mention about “church tithing”. For me, this allowed a guilt-free perspective that certainly makes more sense than the organized church perspective.

Not surprisingly, Mr. Devereux has successfully completed college and is now a strong contributing member in society. He currently lives in Atlanta and is working on his second book.

GAR FISH AND LONG GRAVY should be required reading for everyone. Don’t let the shortness of this book make you apprehensive about buying it. This book has value from the viewpoint of a young child looking back at his past and offering a different perspective to today’s sense.

Don’t expect GAR FISH AND LONG GRAVY to be a quick read. It is reflective and introspective in a way that makes all of us stop and think about how to make each of our own lives better.

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