inspirethoughts

Book Critique - Drowning: a true story, a troubling experience

Stars: 3 / 5

Recommendation: A decent account of personal experiences, self-evaluation, and above all having an educated spiritual experience. Do not read it like a novel, read it as it is presented - as a diary.

Drowning: a true story, a troubling experience; is a personal account of the author, Joe Rosenbran, published in June of 2020. It details about the 10-day travel experience that Rosenbran had across the State of Israel.

If you have been following my book and movie reviews, you know by now that these kind of books I don’t usually pick. They end up on my list only when someone loans them to me to read hoping I would like them as much as they liked; or if they recommend and if something of that book catches my attention. And such is the case with this book as well.

Author Joe Rosenbran is my dear friend Patty's nephew. In the recent lot of books she loaned me, she had included this and had suggested I read it. And so here are my thoughts on the book. 

The book was presented in the form of diary entries, as is, from Rosenbran's personal diary entries that he made during his 2018 Birthright trip to Israel. He did add footnotes and end notes at several places, which actually helped someone like me who did not know a lot about their religion and customs. Despite that I had to take help of Google to understand a lot of terms. I am guessing it would be the same to anyone who would read Hindu terms or related to my culture in my posts. :)

Some of his diary entries were titled with song lyrics. Like one entry titled as "On Reflection", a rock song by the British rock band Gentle Giant from their 1975 album Free Hand. Interesting song it seemed when I listened to it after. Another one was Good Intentions by Toad the Wet Sprocket from his 1995 album In Light Syrup. And many more of them listed. 

Even in dire situations he found humor and fun, such as - his group making commemorative t-shirts to mark the fact that they lost luggage in Brussels Airlines. However, for such a young man, he does have some strong ideas and values for his future life. 

I commend Rosenbran to put out all of his flaws as well for everyone in the world to read about. I would say his spiritual journey brought him the capability to see inside himself, acknowledge his flaws; and also share them with the world without worrying about any backslash it might cause him. 

His horrendous experience left me speechless. He comments more than once that he escaped death. I would like to think he was given a second chance at life. At least that is what I felt from his writings.

For such a young man he certainly wrote down his account very well and to the point. He gives us his music through lyrics as well. A decent account of personal experiences, self-evaluation, and above all having an educated spiritual experience. Do not read it like a novel, read it as it is presented - as a diary.

Spoiler Alerts:

1. Book Trivia:

a. It was nice to see a dedication to his grandmother, Edythe Rosenfield, my friend's mother. I met Edythe once or twice and also had seen her when she was in hospital. Sadly she had passed away in the spring due to Covid-19 complications. We just had a memorial birthday tea in her name honoring.

b. Rosenbarn mentions a few movies he had watched while on plane - 2017 American Made, 2017 The Greatest Showman, 2018 Isle of Dogs. 

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