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Girl Meets God: A Memoir by Lauren F. Winner
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Girl Meets God: A Memoir

by Lauren F. Winner

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8762010,122 (4.02)15
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Lauren Winner's is a great writer, though she writes for an audience that is well read on literary greats, of which I am not. She does a decent job of explaining the extremely obscure authors she references, but other times she makes allusions without explanation to authors and works of writing I know nothing about.

The first half of the memoir follows a sort of path of her faith journey from reformed Jew to Orthodox Jew to Episcopal Christian. The second half or so is more of a collection of memoir thoughts and stories related to her faith. I really enjoyed the book overall.

( )
  ariahfine | Jan 21, 2014 |
I agree with the reviewer who said that she wanted to love this book, but did not. Winner's life so far has had one remarkable feature: she converted to Orthodox Judiaism as a teen, then converted to Anglican Christianity in her twenties (this second conversion was influenced by Jan Karon's Mitford series and a dream she had in which Jesus appeared to her bearing a distinct resemblance to actor Daniel Day-Lewis). Apart from this unusual background, she comes across as just another well-heeled, self-absorbed graduate student. There were chapters in this loosely-organized memoir that were beautifully written and resonant, but by the time I was done with the book, I felt as though I had spent quite enough time with the author. ( )
  akblanchard | Oct 2, 2012 |
Jewish-Christian, women, memoir, God
  saintjudeslibrary | Aug 31, 2012 |
Author, Laura Winner was raised by a lapsed Baptist mother and secular Jewish father. She feels a drive toward God as powerful as her drives toward books and boys. Twice she has attempted to read her way into religion to Orthodox Judaism her freshman year at Columbia, and then four years later at Cambridge to Anglican Christianity. Twice she has discovered that a religion's actual practitioners may not measure up to its theoretical proponents. Winner, a doctoral candidate in the history of religion, in her 20s, is young for an autobiography. Because most chapters, though loosely related to the Christian church year, could stand alone. If you would like to explore the book, press control/click here.

Girl Meets God was the forerunner to Mudhouse Sabbath which was a Rector’s Bible Study choice.
  EdwardGleason | Oct 26, 2011 |
This is the story of the author's conversion to Orthodox Judaism and then to evangelical Christian. The story itself was interesting and well written. I enjoyed and perhaps was a little jealous of her complete and total faith.

However, as a I read it, and now looking book, I wonder how much of her belief was pure faith and devotion and how much was her personality, which it seems could be the type for her to get obsessed with things and dive in head first. ( )
  stacyinthecity | Oct 31, 2010 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0812970802, Paperback)

The child of a Jewish father and a lapsed Southern Baptist mother, Lauren F. Winner chose to become an Orthodox Jew. But even as she was observing Sabbath rituals and studying Jewish law, Lauren was increasingly drawn to Christianity. Courageously leaving what she loved, she eventually converted. In Girl Meets God, this appealing woman takes us through a year in her Christian life as she attempts to reconcile both sides of her religious identity.

Here readers will find a new literary voice: a spiritual seeker who is both an unconventional thinker and a devoted Christian. The twists and turns of Winner’s journey make her the perfect guide to exploring true faith in today’s complicated world.

Praise for Girl Meets God:


“A passionate and thoroughly engaging account of a continuing spiritual journey within two profoundly different faiths.”
The New York Times Book Review

“A charming, humorous, and sometimes abrasive recollection of a religious coming-of-age . . . a compelling journey from Judaism to Christianity.”
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“A book to savor . . . Winner is an all-too-human believer, and the rest of us can see our own struggles, theological and otherwise, in hers.”
Fort Worth Star-Telegram

“[A] memoir, literary and spiritual, sharing Anne Lamott’s self-depreciating intensity and Stephen J. Dubner’s passion for authenticity . . . Winner’s record of her own experiences so far is a page-turning debut by a young writer worth watching.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“[The] narrative’s real strength . . . is its addictive readability combined with the author’s deep knowledge of, delight in, and nuanced discussion of both Christian and Jewish teachings. . . . Intriguing, absorbing, puzzling, surprisingly sexy, and very smart.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:47:37 -0400)

Like most of us, Lauren Winner wants something to believe in. The child of a reform Jewish father and a lapsed Southern Baptist mother, she chose to become an Orthodox Jew. But as she faithfully observes the Sabbath rituals and studies Jewish laws, she finds herself increasingly drawn to Christianity. Taking a courageous step, she leaves behind what she loves and converts. Now the even harder part: How does one reinvent a religious self? How does one embrace the new without abandoning the old? How does a convert become spiritually whole. In GIRL MEETS GOD, this appealingly honest young woman takes us through a year in her search for a religious identity. Despite her conversion, she finds that her world is still shaped by her Jewish experiences. Even as she rejoices in the holy days of the Christian calendar, she mourns the Jewish rituals she still holds dear. Attempting to reconcile the two sides of her religious self, Winner applies the lessons of Judaism to the teachings of the New Testament, hosts a Christian seder, and struggles to fit her Orthodox friends into her new religious life. Ultimately she learns that faith takes practice and belief is an ongoing challenge. Like Anne Lamott's, Winner's journey to Christendom is bumpy, but it is the rocky path itself that makes her a perfect guide to exploring spirituality in today's complicated world. Her engaging approach to religion in the twenty-first century is illuminating, thought-provoking, and most certainly controversial.… (more)

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