Based on a beloved teacher’s most popular lesson, The Priority List is a bold, inspirational story of learning, love, and legacy that challenges us to ask: What truly matters in life?
David Menasche lived for his work as a high school English teacher. His passion inspired his students, and between lessons on Shakespeare and sentence structure, he forged a unique bond with his kids, buoying them through personal struggles while sharing valuable life lessons.
When a six-year battle with brain cancer ultimately stole David’s vision, memory, mobility, and - most tragically of all - his ability to continue teaching, he was devastated by the thought that he would no longer have the chance to impact his students’ lives each day.
But teaching is something Menasche just couldn’t quit. Undaunted by the difficult road ahead of him, he decided to end his treatments and make life his classroom. Cancer had robbed him of his past and would most certainly take his future; he wouldn’t allow it to steal his present. He turned to Facebook with an audacious plan: a journey across America - by bus, by train, by red-tipped cane - in hopes of seeing firsthand how his kids were faring in life. Had he made a difference? Within forty-eight hours of posting, former students in more than fifty cities replied with offers of support and shelter.
Traveling more than eight thousand miles from Miami to New York, to America’s heartland and San Francisco’s Golden Gate, and visiting hundreds of his students, David’s fearless journey explores the things we all want and need out of life - family, security, independence, love, adventure - and forces us to stop to consider our own Priority List.
©2013 David Menasche (P)2013 Audible Inc.
I have always loved to read, and now I really enjoy listening to my books as well!!
My biggest complaint about this book? It was just not long enough!! I could have listened to this man tell his stories for many more hours. But considering his tragic health condition, it's a wonder he even wrote this memoir--and even more miraculous that he narrated the audiobook version.
But I'm truly glad he did--and grateful I listened to it. David Menasche was an inspiration to his students, and can now be an inspiration to us all!!
We read to know that we are not alone
Incredibly moving and inspiring story. Expected to be a sobbing mess, but walked away feeling very happy that people like David Menasche exist, and that his story can remind us all to live in the moment. Bonus in listening to the audio book is that he reads it, making the story that much more personal.
David slowly learned to accept the nature of impermanence while continuing to be passionate about teaching and his students.
I think this makes an interesting read after just listening to "a More Beautiful Question". This books offers the perspective of a passionate teacher who is wanting to reach people's lives and have successfully doing so. This makes me realize just how important are our teachers' motivations. I have met many teachers over school days and they do put focus on vastly different goals.
The book also touches on how we deal with the nature of impermanence in life. I think this also helps me explore the path to death and dying for myself and loved ones. It is never easy, and it gets tremendously better once you have accepted it and embrace what is ahead. David took on the journey when he finally accepted that he no longer lived the life that he has been accustomed to. When he took off to go around the country, he began to see the seeds that he had planted blossomed. He took what inspired him and wrote this book to inspire the rest of us.
I looked up David on Facebook and realized he had passed about a month ago. I sent him a friend request anyway, hoping to send a message of thanks to whoever that is still managing his Facebook page.
Worth the time if you need a message from this subject. An inspiring teachers story that may also inspire current and future teachers.
I'm not sure why I did not especially love this book, but I did really like it. The enthusiasm of this teacher for involving and motivating his students was so admirable, the schools need more like him. What an interesting man, such a strong spirit to carry him through his battle. I felt sad his marriage suffered because of his dedication and then the cancer dominated everything after it arrived in the story. I felt very sad for D.Menasche as he met up with former students. It was very moving that many remembered him so well and wanted to help. I did end up inspired by him, but just a sadness remained.
I'm a mom. I have drama in my life. I don't want books with the F-bomb, nor graphic violence. I read for fun and to bring my family together. I read for reducing stress levels. We have never had a television in our home and our children are now mid twenties to 19. We listen together and look for belly-wrenching laughter. So what is it like to live without a TV? Awesomely educational and inspirational. Each new book is a marvel.
I listened to this book in relatively long periods, so I feel like I can say this was a good attempt at trying to understand the author and his story.
Cancer sucks. There is no other way to describe this situation. I wanted to love his story and his journey but I didn't as much as I wanted to. Author read books are sometimes a real mixed ball of wax. I know why he read it but I wanted a more engaging reader, more drama and emotion in each word - I wanted to feel his journey, not just hear about it.
This story is a tough call because would those words mean as much to his students if read by a professional narrator? Probably not. So, considering this book was not written for me but for David Menasche's students, friends and family, then I will consider this a pretty good book. Read by a professional narrator the book would mean more to me and less to the students, friends and family.
I would recommend this audio book. It is a quick listen and an inspirational story. However, the author read the story and that was really painful to listen to. They needed to cast an actor.
Seeing how the teacher overcame his obstacles.
Yes - it is a wonderful story.
Yes and No. Why don't I feel inspired? The answer is, I don't know. As an educator myself, I was inspired in the beginning of the story and hearing a passion for students. Unfortunately, the rest of the story became a validation of his success. Do true educators need this? I am not sure... I felt that he needed the ego boost to keep him going. As a terminal cancer patient, is that wrong - No, I don't think so. Thus, I am torn as to how to rate or receive the story. It could simply be that I had just listened to the Last Lecture. I was deeply inspired by the story and I feel that this BOOK (not the story) was lacking. He is a very courageous individual who gave his life to education. I am just not a fan of the approach.
It was very difficult - the flow was very harsh. However, the compassionate side of me understands why. His vision has deteriorated and there is some credence to delivering your story first hand. At the same time - I did not feel his passion - it seemed very contrived (like reading from cue cards, which might have been, given his condition.)
I feel heartless in such a review. Maybe if there was more focus on his time with students before we get into his travels, I would have been more inspired.
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