Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Friendship Defined and Explored

But if you is lookin for a real friend, then I'll be one. Forever.
Same Kind of Different As Me: A Modern-Day Slave, an International Art Dealer, and the Unlikely Woman Who Bound Them TogetherIt has been a great week for fast reads.  I actually started and finished 3 books in the span of 4 days.  Kinda crazy for me.  The latest book was brought to me on Friday evening by a friend of mine.  She said she read it really fast and recommended it because we (-D and -L) are from Texas.  The book: same kind of different as me.  The book indeed is set in a town I grew up visiting very regularly.  -D was actually born in Fort Worth, my mom was born there.  I know this town.  At least, that is what I thought until I read the book.  At the same time, I was heading downtown for doctor's appointments, dinners, and concerts, there was a whole other drama unfolding just down the street.  It was shocking to hear the names of the places and streets where the action of this story took place and know them.  Not just know them, but picture them in my mind's eye.  Only my eyes had never been opened like they were when I read this book. 

The story is a true one (very hard to believe at times) of a modern-day slave (Denver Moore) and a high-end art dealer (Ron Hall) forming an unlikely friendship that would stand the test of some very difficult circumstances.  The events surrounding the meeting of these friends are common enough - a couple decides to volunteer their time down at the Rescue Mission and meets a homeless man.  But the force that drove them together is beyond normal experience.  What results is a modern-day covenant relationship - an actual declaration of true, lasting friendship - that is tested.  It is a picture of the Jonathan-David relationship seen in 1 Samuel.  It is a thing of beauty. 

My favorite line from the entire book, is one that made me cry just at the thought of the commitment.  It is the promise: "But if you is lookin for a real friend, then I'll be one.  Forever."  This caused me to think that I have never had to ask for or declare a friendship with another person.  All my friends just, sort of, happened.  But the context of this statement gives it weight.  The man who said this, Denver, had never let anyone close, never let anyone in.  And here, the one person you think would not understand friendship at all, is the one who defines it in the most simple terms possible.   The promise is reciprocated by Ron, "Denver, if you'll be my friend, I promise not to catch and release." 

I loved this book and devoured it by the half.  I truly believe they should have done some sort of cross-promotion with Kleenex (If you buy the book, you get a free box).  I cried most of the afternoon yesterday until I had to start making dinner.  Then, while I was getting dinner together, I cried some more.  Then, while dinner was simmering, I cried some more.  Sometimes you just need a good cry and yesterday was the day.  Most people aren't as sappy as me (I literally cried in the movie King Ralph!), but this book is a moving portrait of friendship, commitment, and faith. 

Rating: 6 of 7


What is your favorite book about friendship?


  1. This is a message for Leah -- I couldn't figure out another way to contact you:
    Re: Jane in June
    You: Love this idea. I tried to sign up on the Google.doc and it said it was closed. I will not be deterred, though...I am joining in all Sarah Palin-like (rogue).

    Me: You can still participate, but the Doc is closed because I won't be checking it and tracking people down. From here on out, if you want in, email me or write it up and send it.
    Or go Rogue.

  2. Yay! You liked it!!! It was a good cry. I think my favourite line was, "Just tell em I'm a nobody that's tryin to tell everbody 'bout Somebody that can save anybody."

  3. Tara - I liked that line too!