“I wrote these letters so that long after I’m gone, you’ll know that I loved you, had great hopes for you, and wanted to give you my best advice on living in this tough world. If I can’t be there with you, I hope my letters will act as a sort of reminder of me—as if I’m standing there beside you, whispering in your ear, and putting my arm around your shoulder.”
Mike Huckabee has worn many hats throughout his life: pastor, politician, governor, presidential candidate, talk show host, rock bassist, pundit, husband, and father. But since his first grandchild was born, he’s found that the role of grandfather is more satisfying than just about any of the others.
Huckabee wanted to give something to his grandson, Chandler, that would last forever. He began drafting a series of letters to Chandler recounting heartwarming stories from his past and the bittersweet lessons learned along the way. With the birth of his granddaughter, Scarlett, just a year later, Huckabee was further inspired to convey his love and wisdom.
Dear Chandler, Dear Scarlett touches on the timeless topics of faith, love, family, overcoming adversity, and staying true to your values in the face of failure and temptation. For instance, Huckabee tells how being forced to pick up pecans from the trees in his yard taught him the value of hard work. (“We were told that if we wanted to eat that night and sleep in a bed instead of in the yard, we’d pick up the pecans.”) Years later he learned the real meaning of love after watching a friend care for his dying wife who could no longer recognize him. (“He loved her not because he enjoyed it or found pleasure in it, but because he had promised that he would never leave her until death parted them. And here he was, keeping that promise, faithful to the end.”)
Like his bestseller A Simple Christmas, Dear Chandler, Dear Scarlett isn’t about politics. It’s a deeply personal, heartfelt, inspirational book that can be enjoyed by anyone. As Huckabee writes: “Although my advice comes from my personal experience and I’m writing with my grandkids in mind, I hope any parent, grandparent, child, or grandchild can take away something valuable from these letters. I’ll try not to be too obnoxious, but don’t worry, if you ever sit next to me on a plane, I’ll still be happy to show you all the photos of Chandler and Scarlett I have on my phone.”
Former Arkansas governor, presidential candidate, and current Fox News talk show host, Huckabee (A Simple Christmas) puts his trademark folksiness to use in a staged set of "grandpa's letters" to his one-year-old grandson, Chandler, and baby granddaughter, Scarlett. He hopes the two children will establish a "personal relationship with the Creator of All Things" and tells Chandler and Scarlett to be kind, especially to the less fortunate. He discusses love and marriage, the environment, and even creativity in decent, heartwarming ways, constantly referring to himself as "grandpa" for effect. In one pleasant chapter Huckabee makes the convincing case that pets, especially dogs, "make us better humans." He endorses patriotism and military heroism. Huckabee's down-home style attracts a loyal crowd from agrarian pietists to Tea Party activists. Here, nothing complex tugs at Huckabee's reassuring, anodyne thoughts, though that is likely a limitation of the form. However, he affirms values that are worth reiterating, even if he does so in treacly ways, and his easy-to-read essays will reinforce his admirers' fixed ideas.
A must read!
I downloaded this book and was not able to put it down until finished reading it. The format is ingenious. It is written to Mike's grandkids but is chocked full of great advice to everyone. I teach Sunday School to First Graders and it will no doubt help in that. Everyone who has kids or is thinking of having kids or ever was a kid will love it! (Guess that's everyone! :)). I've always been a big Huckabee fan and this book didn't disappoint! Huckabee 2016!