Book Review

The “This I Believe” copy I was given.

I have always loved to read, but only if I got to pick the book to read. Throughout junior high and high school, the English classes would have assigned summer readings that we would have a test over in the first week back at school. Because of this, I had a bad image of required school readings – until this semester, that is.

In one of my classes this semester, we were given a book on the second day of class and were told that we would be having periodical discussions during the semester. I immediately rejected the idea. I knew I had to do it because it was a grade, but I also knew that I would not enjoy it. Boy, was I wrong.

The book they gave us was This I Believe. This book includes many essays written by a mix of some famous people and some not famous people. There was an edition printed in the 1950s, so some of those essays were also included in this edition. The essays are about what these specific people believe. There are stories about starting from nothing and ending with more than enough and some about religious beliefs.

These stories stood out to me because each one was so different and so unique from the last. There were some that my personal beliefs contradicted with and it was hard to finish those stories because the author had such an opposing view than I had. However, I kept reading and I am very glad I did. Being able to read about someone’s personal beliefs and how they got to that point helps me understand why they believe what they do, not just what they believe with no reasoning.

There are also stories that had a great emotional effect on myself. These are the stories of heartbreak and loss where the authors are so close to giving up, but for one reason or another, everything gets better or the author learns an important life lesson from it.

Each of the essays in the book show a personal account and belief. There is something so special about that that cannot be taken away from the reading experience of This I Believe. I would highly recommend reading this book and would put this in my top five books to read during college.

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