E is for Eggers

The latest book I’ve inhaled in my 26 in 2010 quest was Zeitoun by Dave Eggers. Eggers retells the experience of one man just before, during, and after Hurricane Katrina.

This is a non-fiction story written with a lot of empathy for the Zeitoun family. You can feel how touched Eggers was by this family’s experience through the pages even though Eggers does an excellent job of letting his subjects speak for themselves. Even the Zeitoun family does quite an honorable check of avoiding rantings and angry dialogue.

A lot of things happened as a result of Hurricane Katrina. So many that it is simply impossible to get a full understanding of what really unfolded in New Orleans before, during, and after. The Zeitoun’s story was quite honestly unexpected for me personally. I also found it to be quite shaking for many of the same reasons Mrs. Zeitoun seems to be grappling with to this very day– how on earth did this happen in the United States of America?

Eggers and the Zeitouns steer clear of assigning blame. As a matter of fact, their lawsuit is against several entities acknowledging how vast the scope of this disaster is. At the same time Eggers shows how the American system completely fragmented, he also shows true resilience of the American spirit. This story is very touching and extremely inspirational. Defintely another very pleasant surprise in my project.

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