Nine Lives Endless Dreams
Nine Lives: Endless Dreams, by Marlene Zaedyan, is the story of Zaedyan’s life and the three generations of perseverance and determination preceding it. She shares the heartbreaking story of her journey around the world as she sought freedom and solace from her war-torn homeland of Lebanon. While Zaedyan faces war in many forms, whether it be religious conflicts in her home country, struggles with her family members’ health, or the impending pandemic, she fights without losing hope and shares her harrowing tale.
With stunning, descriptive passages relating the history of her time in Lebanon and Palestine, Zaedyan shows us the horrors of war without losing joy. Her storytelling is cinematic; as readers are able to see the vivid picture she paints of her families’ lives and her experiences. The narrative avoids becoming too philosophical or dreamy with blunt reflections and genuine admissions of fear, numbness, and perseverance.
I found the story to have a great pace as we explored the lives of Marlene, her mother, and her grandmother. These generations of women each have different approaches to how they show care, and I appreciated the author’s honesty as she discussed the hardships she faced. She is understanding of the adults in her life and the decisions they had to make without creating excuses for them. She doesn’t place blame on one person or “side” in the war stories she tells; rather, she unpacks how suffering can affect an individual, and expresses compassion to those around her.
There were moments when I wished that we as readers heard more of Zaedyan’s personal reflections on the horrors happening in her daily life, rather than recounts of historical events. But as the book went on, the author shared more and more of her emotional responses to the dark situations around her, and I felt that we got to know her and her feelings better by the end of the book.
This is a book that shares a message of resilience, hope, joy, faith, and ambition. As a reader, it left me feeling inspired that a person can see so much suffering and terror and manage to still radiate love around their family and friends. It reminded me that it’s easy to fall prey to hopelessness or fear, and much harder to remain strong and hopeful. I think anyone who reads this book will come away from it with a deeper appreciation for life and its small joys.
Pages: 300 | ASIN: B08WKFDMKX
Posted on May 10, 2021, in Book Reviews, Five Stars and tagged biography, inspirational, Marlene Zaedyan, memoir, Nine Lives Endless Dreams, nonfiction, true story. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.