Traveling Mercies Review
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Anne Lamott doesn’t fit any of the typical stereotypes of Christians. She’s a little more, well, frank, than most. And in this book, she lays her Christian faith open for the world to see. It’s a very candid, refreshing memoir.

It’s not often you hear a Christian leave the “F” word right where it was originally—as the word in the “prayer” at the turning point of her conversion story ("F--- it. I quit"). It’s not often you hear a Christian say that it felt like God was following her around like a stray cat—and mean nothing disrespectful by it. But then again, I believe I already mentioned that Anne Lamott’s a little different than the stereotypical Christian.

Anne doesn’t stop there. She tells how hard it is to love those who have different tastes in politics, those who do
n’t have the same taste in novels, and those young teenagers with perfect thighs. She describes lots of instances where she used her two primary prayers: “Help me, help me, help me” and “Thank you, thank you, thank you.” And she isn’t afraid to admit that quitting her drug, alcohol, and eating disorders came a few years after she became a Christian—it wasn’t a “one-conversion-does-it-all” story in her case.

It’s not often you see such self-forgiveness combined with such an ability to admit failures and triumphs. This attitude, expressed in beautiful, imaginative, conversational writing full of funny humor and a strong command of unexpected metaphor, makes this a glorious book to read. No wonder its become one of my favorites.

If your opinion of Christianity is a negative one (perhaps you’ve heard about too many televangelists), try reading this book. Even if you don’t agree with her, you’re guaranteed to get a different perspective on faith and what it means.

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