A House in the Sky by Amanda Lindhout and Sara Corbett


For two reasons, I cannot believe that this is a memoir:

  1. It seems unimaginable, incredible, incomprehensible that this was her life for 460 days; that she suffered so much, that she was treated so horrendously, that she had the strength and mental capacity to constantly fight for herself both inwardly and outwardly.
  2. It is so beautifully written that it at first seems it could be only literature. That she was able to feel compassion for her abusers, or to transcend her suffering and calmly build a staircase, then rooms, and a house in her mind to keep her safe from the pain, seems almost above the capabilities of mere mortals. Her character is too good to be believable. And yet, with every word, she convinced me that it was her. That it was real. That she is real. That she suffered and rose above it.

A House in the Sky is poignant, haunting, and, unexpectedly hopeful. It is a message of hope, compassion and forgiveness. It was hard to read, but even harder to put down.

No. 13 on my challenge. Amanda Lindhout is nothing if not a heroine.

Games with All Lit Up – Cycling

After four weeks of competition—and some pretty amazing/head-shakingly bad sports puns—our PanLit Games are coming to a close with one final category: we’re taking it to the streets! No, we’re not talking dance (although that would have been amazing), we’re talking about cycling. Road cycling, popular since the late 1800s, is a test of stamina and strategy as teams work together to cross that finish line. Our PanLit Games contestants are all “spokes” people who have had the stamina and strength to write about important topics and themes. Let’s see who gets a breakaway. —All Lit Up

We’re here. We’ve done it, All Lit Up. I love you to the end. (Or was that the Pogues?)

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