These past two weeks have been tough. I’ve been mostly confined to a bed, since my back pain has returned with a vengeance. I’ve been barely able to stand up straight, but have been going to PT, acupuncture, and most importantly, trying to stay positive (spoiler: this doesn’t always work). I’m doing what I can to find some relief, but this week (and last) have included more downtime than I would like. The upside? I’ve read 5 books in 2 weeks 🙂 If you’re looking for a book to read, I highly recommend the Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance. His story is fascinating, and he explains in simple terms why it’s so difficult (but not impossible) to move beyond the class you were born into.
Here’s the synopsis from Amazon, if you’d like to read more:
“From a former marine and Yale Law School graduate, a probing look at the struggles of America’s white working class through the author’s own story of growing up in a poor Rust Belt town
Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of poor, white Americans. The disintegration of this group, a process that has been slowly occurring now for over forty years, has been reported with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. In Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hanging around your neck.
The Vance family story began with hope in postwar America. J.D.’s grandparents were “dirt poor and in love” and moved north from Kentucky’s Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually one of their grandchildren would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of success in achieving generational upward mobility. But as the family saga of Hillbilly Elegy plays out, we learn that J.D.’s grandparents, aunt, uncle, sister, and, most of all, his mother struggled profoundly with the demands of their new middle-class life, never fully escaping the legacy of abuse, alcoholism, poverty, and trauma so characteristic of their part of America. With piercing honesty, Vance shows how he himself still carries around the demons of his chaotic family history.”
If, like me, you love to read, here are 5 more of my favorites I’ve read over the years…
What books are you reading right now?