My Review of Lynne Podrat First Book
This was Lynne’s first book she had written after an already full life. Lynne had been a teacher for 31 years. Teaching was the LAST thing she wanted to be. Prior to this, she worked in the world of Fashion and Design as an Assistant Buyer & Department Manager with Bloomingdale’s Department Store for 15 years of her life after graduating from the Pennsylvania State University.
Disclosure: I received the product in exchange for my review. All opinions are 100% mine.
Listen to Me, in my opinion, is a “love story” of sorts between an older sister and her brother who has Down Syndrome. The oldest of three siblings Lynne is forced to parent her two younger brothers where her parents fall short in many ways. There are times in this book that I found myself angry at Lynne’s Mom and Dad in how they acted about Bruce (her brother with Down Syndrome). At times they treated him as less of a child due to his illness. But Lynne as best as she could would make up for that one hundred times over.
My Realization About Lynne’s Parents (Bruce & David’s Parents)
I then realized that possibly it wasn’t Lynne’s parent’s fault so much as it was that they didn’t know how to cope with Bruce’s illness. So I tried to be more understanding of her parents. There were times in Lynne’s life that she sacrificed things to be there for Bruce to make up for her parent’s shortcomings. I found myself rallying for Lynne throughout the book because of her fight for Bruce. He was not only her little brother who had a disability, she wanted as much for him as possible. All the while she still pressed on with her own personal life when it came to having an education, a family, kids, and a career.
Thoughts of Mine About Those Affected By Down Syndrome (Children/Parents)
I can’t imagine what it would be like to have a child born with Down Syndrome. I have had a friend in my past that had a child with down syndrome and only witnessed a little of what they had to endure. Also, I have had the ability to watch a little girl from a baby now to the age of 11 grow up through Facebook with Down Syndrome. Her Mom is so wonderful to share her accomplishments as well as her struggles, the cheers, and tears. This little girl was their first child, and they now have five total (the oldest is the only one with DS).
Reading This Book
Reading this book gave me the perspective not from a Mother’s point of view, but from a sibling’s point of view. Although their brother had a good part in Bruce’s life, I still feel Lynne was the front and center in taking care of Bruce’s needs. Janice, his caregiver in the home was the primary caregiver besides Lynne for what sounded like 33 years. Janice was also a main ‘family member’ in Bruce’s care also.
I do not like to do book spoilers so I will leave you here to say if you enjoy books that are told in the first person. You will enjoy this book. Books that are written by the author on true accounts of their life’s story, this book is for you. If you do read this book, please come back and leave us a comment and let us know what you think.Listen To Me: How My Down Syndrome Brother Saved My Life by Lynne Podrat
Publisher: LP Press (August 19, 2021) Category: Non Fiction, Memoir, Special Needs, Disabilities, Down Syndrome, Siblings Tour dates: March 14-April 14, 2022 ISBN: 978-1737666806 Available in Print and ebook, 128 pages
Description Listen To Me by Lynne PodratThis memoir was written to honor my youngest brother’s influence over my life, the good, the bad, and the ugly of living with a Down Syndrome sibling. It tells the story of the children in my family, despite our parents’ frailties, remaining committed to each other through life’s many changes and separations. Who I am today is directly related to the who I needed to become.
Praise to Lynne Podrat“As the intertwined life stories of the author and her brother Bruce emerge, the story takes on a new tone. Bitterness and rancor are replaced with a gentle kind of mellowness and a roaring-fire-on-a-cold-winter-day kind of warmth. This is underscored when the author writes that her plans for Bruce were “to open and enrich his world.”
In the end, however, she realizes how being with Bruce “accomplished so much more.” She realizes how this “sweet small man” and “Bruce’s” capacity to love and to “just go on because there was no other choice” profoundly influenced her life. And how Bruce opened and enriched her world. Oh, and the title? You’ll have to read the book for yourself to figure that one out.
Flavored with gentle humor and tongue-in-cheek wit, Listen to Me isn’t a long read. At about 30,000 words, you can finish it in an afternoon. But the reflections and insights will reverberate much longer.”- Kristine, Pages and Paws
“This book is a touching story about the unconditional love between an older sister and her brother, Bruce. The prose is uplifting and inspirational, without the traces of ableism that can be found in other such works. The overall message is a plea to see people for who they are, not their diagnosis and aims to increase disability awareness.”- Laura Quinn, Laura Quinn Writes
“This memoir is exactly what I needed. It made me laugh and cry and helped me appreciate the people in my life even more than I already did. Bruce’s love for his family, friends, and favorite rock ‘n’ roll idols lives on through this book. His larger-than-life personality left such an impression on me; I can honestly say that I feel like I know him without ever having met him. I think about him from time to time and his essence inspires hope in me, showing me how precious it is to have an innocent view of life at any age.
Sandi, Proof Reader Sandi
Lynne Podrat graduated from the Pennsylvania State University and then spent fifteen years in the Fashion Industry as an Assistant Buyer and Department Manager with Bloomingdales Department Store before returning to school to receive her educational degrees from Arcadia University and Gynedd Mercy.
A retired educator and Administrator from the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania School District, she taught English, literature, composition and history in elementary and secondary schools.
She has secretly been a writer and poet her whole life, but has only recently chosen to share those talents with the world. Lynne now lives with her husband in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, spending winters dragon boating where her heart races and summers hiking the Rockies in Vail, Colorado where her heart sings.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lynne.podrat Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lynnepodratwrites/ Twitter: http://twitter.com/lynne_podrat
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Giveaway Listen To Me by Lynne PodratThis giveaway is for 3 print copies, one for each of 3 winners and is open to the U.S. only. This giveaway ends on April 15, 2022 midnight, pacific time. Entries accepted via Rafflecopter only.
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