Storyteller, reading teacher, author...when it comes to stories/books, it's my vice and I have unashamedly made addicts of my entire family!
What is not to love about the compassion and love and commitment of Gregory Boyle's service as a parish priest making a real difference in the barrio? He is an amazing storyteller both as author and narrator; it takes skill to tell true anecdotal stories and find a common thread to connect them into a larger context.
It makes a connection to The Help, although it is a fictional book. Both books contain many small stories within a lager context. In these books we are offered a glimpse of human dignity, spirituality and raw truth.
Each story of an individual triumph was my favorite in the moment. I also liked the contrast of stories that ended less than fairy tale. Together they depicted the harsh reality of living in gangland which showed the successes of Delores Mission and Homeboy Industries as extraordinary accomplishments.
I found a depth of emotional poignancy in this book. It gave me a new perspective into a group of people who are easy to stereotype or marginalize in our society.
This book helped me see failings in myself and society. It is so easy to judge that which we do not understand, or that we have distanced ourselves from.
Gregory Boyle, or "G" as the gang members he works with call him, is a wonderful story teller. In "Tattoos on the Heart" he's taken the stories he's collected from many years of working as a priest with gang members and their families in East L.A. and shared them with us. No other narrator could have read them as well as he has, with the dialects and intonations and experience of retelling these stories. But I'll warn you, it's hard to get through the stories without shedding tears. Boyle has buried nearly 200 people over the years due to gang violence. His dedication and selflessness is lovely to see. Don't get me wrong--he's not tooting his own horn, but merely relating his experiences of trying to get through to these young men and women. There are successes, but many failures. I found the book a wonderful encouragement and will most likely read it again.
Nothing. The book was bad, not the narration.
Cut-out all the long-winded, barely relevant sections discussing his personal theology and religion. He should have stuck to the anecdotes and stories. Obviously religion would take part in these stories, since the man is a pastor, but he often veers off the story to preach at his readers.
I did not finish it. What prompted me to turn it off (after quite a few moments of anger), was the author's comment about how he doesn't think it's possible for anyone to help other human beings if not motivated by religion. That was the final eye roll. It is hard to believe how he had any success helping people with a judgmental attitude like that. The book was consistently preachy, the author did not seem particularly sympathetic.
I do not cry much. I cried through 50% of this book but in a good way. It is a beautiful collection of stories told in a touching manner by the man who experienced them. For someone who is just beginnning a career in social work, this was an invigorating listen. My only warning is if you are listening in public, wear sunglasses to hide your tears.
One of the best. The pages of this book hold the key to feeling compassion for everyone.
When a man came to father Greg and said "some people say this isn't a real church anymore". Father Greg replied "some people say that it finally is"
God loves everyone, don't matter what you've done or where you've come from.
Tell us about yourself!
What a powerful book. Los Angles gangs wars..it seems like a loosing battle. Yet here is one man who pulls a neighborhood together and chooses to face the odds and love those the world has deemed unlovable. Reading this book was a humbling experience and made me question my own values when I go thru union station each morning and see those the city has thrown away.
Audible obsessed lifelong learner.
A story of unconditional love, acceptance, second chances, longing to be loved, bad decisions, hope, tragedy, and above all belonging. Father Boyle truly has touched many lives of the boys caught up in gangs and struggled to fight against the finality of the existence they have lived. Many rays of hope in this book but also gut wrenching tragedy of the senselessness of violence as well.
This is one of the best audio books I've listened to in many years. Full of compassion and love. It'll make your day to take a listen!
I'm not of any kind of religious belief but I was not put off nor offended by all of the religious references.This book has so much to offer, I feel everyone will be able to take something from this read and put it to use.
Yes. Father G reading his story adds so much. He doesn't only believe, he lives it.
Knowing that people like Father G exist. He epitomizes the best of humanity. He never comes across as pushy or preachy, but still speaks the truth as he sees it. I
Father G is the man. His loving portrayal of the 'homies' is probably the only real respect most of them will get in this life.
Yes. I got through it so fast I felt like I wanted more. I would love to hear a Father G story every morning on my way to work.
Listen to it when you need your faith in humanity restored.