Monday, January 30, 2012

"Left to Tell" {by Immaculee Ilibagiza} Book Review

Book Title: Left to Tell

Author: Immaculee Ilibagiza

Number of Pages: 214

Year Published: 2007

Genre: Biography, Memoir

Summary: Immaculee Ilibagiza grew up in a country she loved, surrounded by a family she cherished. But in 1994 her idyllic world was ripped apart as Rwanda descended into a bloody genocide. Immaculees journey through the darkness of genocide will inspire anyone whose life has been touched by fear, suffering, and loss. (taken from goodreads.com)







Our Rating...




Review:  This book brought up so many political and ethical questions which were fascinating to discuss. We talked about why we think genocide occurs (and how we might possibly avoid such a nightmare in our own country).  People said that genocide can happen because they dehumanize those that they are eliminating and they raise their children to feel hatred towards those people.  It was so painful to see Immaculee's friends and neighbors turn against her and her family.  

One of the most fascinating discussion questions was why we thought the Pastor hid Immaculee and the other women.  We came to the conclusion that he did it because he was a "man of God" and it was his duty more than something he wanted to do because he had a good heart.  Even though he wasn't the most loving or kind of rescuers he was still a rescuer and still did a good deed.  

We all were baffled that America did nothing to intervene in this nightmare.  Jillian gave us some fascinating information about President Clinton and the governments' view of Rwanda.  It made me sick to think that I was alive and completely unaware while this was going on.  It was also interesting to learn that Rwanda now has no freedom of the press or democracy and that one half of the population cannot read or write.  There are 613,000 orphans living in Rwanda right now and 50% of the population is 18 or under.  It is amazing that survivors have learned to live side by side with people who murdered their friends and family.  We also discussed how difficult it is to stop a genocide because it is so pyschological and emotional.  How do you change people's thoughts, emotions, and opinions that they have been raised on?  It was haunting to think that this can still happen today. 

Overall we enjoyed this book and were touched by it's chilling beauty.   I think that we can all agree that Immaculee is one beautiful, incredible woman and that she is an inspiration.

Content:
Language-Mild
Sexuality-Mild 
Violence-Heavy
Drug/Alcohol Use-Mild
Intense/Scary Scenes-Heavy

I hope I did alright Kelly!  It was scary being the first one to use the new template...but I hope I did this book proud. It was one of my very favorites and would hope that every human being would read it.  Amazing.

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