Climb!

Mark Sanders, Author, Tia Sillers-Purcell, Author, Tia Sillers-Purcell, Joint Author Thomas Nelson Publishers $14.99 (144p) ISBN 978-1-4016-0078-5
Sanders and Sillers (I Hope You Dance) employ the familiar metaphor of a mountain for life's tough spots in this petite motivational gift book--e.g. Mt. I Think My Dad is an Alcoholic, Mt. I'm Getting Divorced and Mt. The Doctor Says It's Cancer--and assure readers that they can surmount all hills if they just get help and get moving. They""don't have all the answers,"" and the answers they do offer are familiar ones: embrace hope, love, strength, tenderness, faith and joy, and eschew regret, denial and fear. The book's main virtue is not its message, but the unstinting positive reinforcement it offers to those stuck in the doldrums. The authors commiserate with their own experiences of dysfunction, including broken families, alcoholism, a suicide attempt, and depression, and congratulate readers for having already scaled the formidable summits of surviving birth and achieving literacy. And while they acknowledge that climbing life's mountains is hard, they insist there is still ample opportunity for raffish joie de vivre, to""be amazed, be humble, be goofy, be alive"" with""some zing, some zip, some zeal."" By turns jaunty, cajoling and sentimental, the book's tone, intermittently megaphoned in all-caps aphorisms (""ONLY LOVE CAN BREAK YOUR HEART"") can at times seem as cloying and insubstantial as a pop ballad. Still, readers in a shallow funk may find its lyrical platitudes and warm reassurances that""YOU'RE DOING A GREAT JOB"" to be an encouraging tonic.
Reviewed on: 03/01/2003
Release date: 03/01/2003
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