NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY:
Los Angeles Times • San Francisco Chronicle •Chicago Tribune • The Christian Science Monitor • Publishers Weekly
In Strength in What Remains, Tracy Kidder gives us the story of one man’s inspiring American journey and of the ordinary people who helped him, providing brilliant testament to the power of second chances. Deo arrives in the United States from Burundi in search of a new life. Having survived a civil war and genocide, he lands at JFK airport with two hundred dollars, no English, and no contacts. He ekes out a precarious existence delivering groceries, living in Central Park, and learning English by reading dictionaries in bookstores. Then Deo begins to meet the strangers who will change his life, pointing him eventually in the direction of Columbia University, medical school, and a life devoted to healing. Kidder breaks new ground in telling this unforgettable story as he travels with Deo back over a turbulent life and shows us what it means to be fully human.
BONUS: This edition contains a Strength in What Remains discussion guide.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Named one of the Top 10 Nonfiction Books of the year by Time • Named one of the year’s “10 Terrific Reads” by O: The Oprah Magazine
“Extraordinarily stirring . . . a miracle of human courage.”—The Washington Post
“Absorbing . . . a story about survival, about perseverance and sometimes uncanny luck in the face of hell on earth. . . . It is just as notably about profound human kindness.”—The New York Times
“Important and beautiful . . . This book is one you won’t forget.”—Portland Oregonian
With an anthropologist's eye and a novelist's pen, Pulitzer Prize winning Kidder (Mountains Beyond Mountains) recounts the story of Deo, the Burundian former medical student turned American migr at the center of this strikingly vivid story. Told in flashbacks from Deo's 2006 return visit to Burundi to mid-1990s New York and the Burundi of childhood memory and young adulthood as the Rwandan genocide spilled across the border following the same inflamed ethnic divisions then picking up in 2003, when author and subject first meet, Deo's experience is conveyed with a remarkable depth of vision and feeling. Kidder renders his subject with deep yet unfussy fidelity and the conflict with detail and nuance. While the book might recall Dave Eggers's novelized version of a real-life Sudanese refugee's experience in What Is the What, reading this book hardly covers old ground, but enables one to walk in the footsteps of its singular subject and see worlds new and old afresh. This profoundly gripping, hopeful and crucial testament is a work of the utmost skill, sympathy and moral clarity.