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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Sorta Like a Rock Star: Amber's Hope and Compassion

Matthew Quick's Sorta Like a Rock Star introduces us to Amber Appleton, a contagiously upbeat protagonist who lives with her alcoholic mother in a school bus. She has a lot going on in her world, though, and her hope manages to shine through, even when tragedy strikes.

For those who've read the book: What did you think of Amber in terms of this month's theme of Compassion? Where did her well of Compassion come from?

And, what other books have you read that include a protagonist who manages to let hope rise to the surface, even in dark situations?

Want to share how you are showing compassion this season? Anything special, or just the daily walk to think of others kindly and act when you can? 

3 comments:

Lorie Ann Grover said...

If I remember correctly, doesn't Amber's hope come from faith in God as well as an inner resilience to survive?

It's been a year, I think, since I read it...

Want to share how you are showing compassion this season? Anything special, or just the daily walk to think of others kindly and act when you can?

Matthew said...

Amber does have faith in her god, although it is somewhat nontraditional in nature. But I think much of her strength comes from action. She puts herself into the world the best she can, shows compassion through her deeds, and helps to make the lives of those around her better, which in turn makes Amber stronger and her life richer. Her attitude is important; it's what buoys her. For Amber, compassion is synonymous with action.

My wife (novelist Alicia Bessette) and I run a blog called Quest For Kindness. Each Thursday we publish an essay on the subject of kindness. As you might imagine, the topic of compassion comes up quite a bit. Many authors--including YA writers Francisco X. Stork, Lisa Schroeder, and Beth Kephart--have already added their voices. We invite all of you to read and submit.

http://aliciabessette.com/blog/

Micol Ostow said...

Can't wait to check that blog out, Matthew.

I think what I respect most about Amber was her ability to put things in perspective. She was able to empathize with those around her regardless of whatever her circumstances were. It's something I try to do when I'm feeling frustrated or let down - to reframe, and focus on the many positives of my life. But I'm not sure I'm as successful as Amber!