Every day across the nation, books are being challenged and removed from public and school libraries. Why challenge a book? The people trying to enforce this censorship truly believe they are doing it for all the right reasons. For the most part, to protect the children. Protect them from dangerous ideas, dangerous thoughts, dangerous information.
Here are the reasons for giving “Career Comeback” such a mediocre grade:
- As I mentioned in the first paragraph, “Career Comeback” is disorganized. It’s hard to find the useful information when you are reading through chapters devoted to beauty makeovers.
- Lisa Johnson Mandell spends WAY too much time weighing in on how to blog and how to social network. It’s not that Lisa Johnson Mandell’s advice about blogging is bad; it’s more that it’s irrelevant and unnecessary to a majority of her readers.
- Some of the chapter titles in “Career Comeback” fail to give the reader an idea of what the chapter is about. For example, the chapter “Reality Check” doesn’t give the reader enough information about what the book will be about, so it’s difficult to quickly peruse the book.
- Many of the examples in the book are poor. For example, the examples of women going through career changes in the book that Lisa Johnson Mandell mentions in “Career Comebcack” probably won’t resonate with most women. The most striking example is that of a twice-divorced single mom who eventually found her bliss by marrying a man in prison. It’s an interesting story, but the woman’s story is definitely more a cautionary tale than a model to live by.
This story makes me happy on so many levels. Faced with an abandoned Walmart store, the town of McAllen, Texas built an award-winning library that has become a community hub, constantly abuzz with activity. For some reason, it seems particularly satisfying that an empty Walmart - the contemporary American temple to all things cheap and materialistic - should be converted to a popular library.
Unlike the wary, foreboding feelings that Miller’s For Your Own Good has inspired in me, David H. Albert’s Homeschooling and the Voyage of Self-Discovery: A Journey of Original Seeking has been providing me with both delight and insight into the life my family and I have chosen. I think that both books are likely going to yield information that all caregivers could find to be very helpful—indeed, that both are probably must-reads!—but I’ve been reading Albert’s much more easily and would love to recommend it and talk about it with other parents, particularly those who are or who are interested in homeschooling.
One of the major drawbacks to homeschooling, you see—in fact, it’s the only drawback we regularly have—is the fact that the parents are “on” 24/7. Normally you don’t mind once you are used to it (and if you have been parenting your kids from birth at your side, you’re already used to it), but once in a while you do feel like you could use a little break, whether it’s a couple of hours with a babysitter or an overnight at grandma’s house, and that’s okay! It’s fun for your child, too, as long as the caregivers are safe and warm people.
Or, more specifically, why was it that Europeans colonized America and not the other way around? Why didn't the Aztecs or Mayans build clipper ships, sail to Europe and decimate the European population? This is the fundamental question posed by Jared Diamond in Guns, Germs and Steel, although the book isn't limited to America, but is about the whole world.
Let me tell you right now: you can homeschool for free. Free.