Or rather, a book recommendation. Reviews tend to just be people re-hashing the plot of a book, and I’m not going to do that. Instead, I’m going to give you a recommendation for a great book to read this summer.
The book is called Bloom, and it’s written by Kelle Hampton – a Florda-based author, blogger and photographer. I know, it’s shocking why I would be attracted to someone with those credentials 🙂
The book is Kelle’s recount of the first year of her second daughters’ life. A daughter who was born with Down Syndrome, much to the surprise of everyone in the delivery room. The book goes on to follow Kelle as she experiences a roller coaster of emotions that ends not just at acceptance, but at the celebration of Down Syndrome and everything that comes along with the diagnosis. She chronicles every stage of that first year with her daughter, the good and the bad, and the ups and the downs, and how she emerged a better person on the other side.
Kelle’s book is stunning to look at. It is filled with full-color photos of her two precious girls, her friends, family and herself. The writing is poetic, emotional and loving, and reads more like a personal diary than a novel. Even the fonts are beautiful.
This is a “light read” in the sense that you can breeze through it in two days, but it is emotionally a “heavy read” – make sure to have a box of kleenex nearby! I guarantee you that you will not be able to make it through the first chapter without crying.
Normally, I tend to stay away from books like this because I’m a bit of a crier. I also don’t tend to read biographies, autobiographies or memoirs unless I feel a real attachment to that person or something they’ve accomplished. In saying that though, I am a big fan of reading non-fiction, and I feel that if someone has an awesome story to tell, then I want to read it! For me, this is one of those books.
I started following Kelle’s blog – Enjoying the Small Things – for about a year now on a friend’s recommendation. It’s fabulous, and if you haven’t checked it out yet, make sure to check it out here. I will warn you though, you will become attached to those little girls!!
I would recommend this book for parents, grandparents, and anyone who has lived through a life-changing diagnosis of a friend or family member. If you don’t fall into these categories, it may be hard to get on board with the happy-happy-love-your-kids-love-your-life attitude that this book exudes. It hit a personal note with me since my uncle, who happened to have DS, passed away almost exactly five years ago. He too needs to have his story written.
So if you’re looking for a great summer read, check out Bloom. It’s a book full of optimism, sweetness and happiness. Even if you are a bit turned off by the sugary coating (as some will be), it would be hard not to take come away from this book appreciating life just a little bit more – and that’s always a good thing.
Oh, remember the poll I created the other day called “What’s Your Thing?” Check it out here… Remember how I predicted that bags would come out on top? Well, I hate to brag, but go on over and check out the results for yourself.
I kinda like this poll thing, any suggestions for future, useless polls??