Reading for Me

The Books I Have Read…..Just for Me

#25: An Invisible Thread (Laura Schroff and Alex Tresniowski)

on November 19, 2012

Normally I don’t read very many memoirs. They always leave me with a saccharine sweet aftertaste that I don’t enjoy. If not overly sweet, I am left feeling depressed that I haven’t achieved more in my own life. Since I love kids so much, the caption on the cover of the book had me from the beginning:  “The true story of an 11-year-old panhandler, a busy sales executive, and an unlikely meeting with destiny.”

This New York Times Bestseller is a touching, moving story. As I read, I found myself laughing with Maurice’s naiveté and crying with Maurice and Laurie as they shared their individual stories of abuse.  What I expected to find in the book was a charming story of two unlikely individuals forming a great friendship…..and that was certainly there.  What I also found — much to my delight — was a insightful look into the meanings of home, love, and significance.  This beautiful book will certainly hold a treasured place on my bookshelf for many years to come.

As I reminisced over the book’s many scenes and tried to determine how to best describe it to my dear readers, I found myself returning to Maurice’s letter at the end of the work.  I think there is no better description of the book that this:

I know An Invisible Thread is about an unusual friendship between two different people, but I think it is about much more than that.  It is about a mother longing for a child and a child longing for a mother.  That longing had nothing to do with umbilical cords or DNA.  It had to do with two people who needed each other and who were destined to meet on the corner of 56th Street and Broadway.  Every Monday, that mother got to know her son, and that son learned about his mother.

And on those Mondays their hearts were sewn together with an invisible thread. (p. 231)

I think this would be a wonderful selection for any reading group as well as high school class.  The prose is easily accessible without watering down the complex issues explored in its pages.


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