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Letters to Sam: A Grandfather's Lessons on Love, Loss, and the Gifts of… (2006)

by Daniel Gottlieb

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1415157,023 (3.5)None
When his grandson was born, Daniel Gottlieb began to write a series of heartfelt letters that he hoped Sam would read later in life. He planned to cover all the important topics--dealing with your parents, handling bullies, falling in love, coping with death--and what motivated him was the fear that he might not live long enough to see Sam reach adulthood. You see, Daniel Gottlieb is a quadriplegic--the result of a near-fatal automobile accident that occurred two decades ago--and he knows enough not to take anything for granted. Then, when Sam was only 14 months old, he was diagnosed with Pervasive Develop-mental Disability, a form of autism, and suddenly everything changed. Now the grandfather and grandson were bound by something more: a disability--and Daniel Gottlieb's special understanding of what that means became invaluable. This lovingly written, emotionally gripping book offers unique--and universal--insights into what it means to be human.… (more)
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Showing 5 of 5
Didn't find that this gave particularly new insights. It did not educate me, change my thoughts or speak to something below my surface. It had the potential to do these things, but this book just didn't do any of it for me. Stuck it out a while and then gave up. It's a bookcrossing ring book so there are other people to enjoy it. ( )
  lydiasbooks | Jan 17, 2018 |
There were days when I was relatively young, and in dire need of self-help, pick-me-up and give-me-life books. So, my bookshelf would be packed with such uplifting books that strangely all seemed to resonate with the power of positive thinking, the influencing of friends, and delving into layers of my subconscious. I read. I devoured these books, and indeed one or two did help me. Now, I am still relatively young, and perhaps in more dire straits than before - so after a long time, I decided to head back to the pop psychology shelf.

And so I found Letters to Sam by Daniel Gottlieb. The author is a quadriplegic and addresses these 'letters' to his grandson, who is autistic. There is no doubt that the book is intimate, compassionate and written from a deeply personal level. Gottlieb offers some precious insights into what it means to be human - and there were moments in the book that touched even this cynical self of mine. Yet, overall, great as the book was, cynical I remained. Perhaps, in another time, in another frame of mind, I might have absolutely relished, cherished, and generally loved this book to pieces. Today, I can say I like it. Just that. Just about. Strange how our moods condition the pages we read. ( )
  Soulmuser | May 30, 2017 |
A very heartfelt set of letters from a compassionate grandfather to his autistic grandson. ( )
  Doondeck | Mar 10, 2011 |
Showing 5 of 5
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When his grandson was born, Daniel Gottlieb began to write a series of heartfelt letters that he hoped Sam would read later in life. He planned to cover all the important topics--dealing with your parents, handling bullies, falling in love, coping with death--and what motivated him was the fear that he might not live long enough to see Sam reach adulthood. You see, Daniel Gottlieb is a quadriplegic--the result of a near-fatal automobile accident that occurred two decades ago--and he knows enough not to take anything for granted. Then, when Sam was only 14 months old, he was diagnosed with Pervasive Develop-mental Disability, a form of autism, and suddenly everything changed. Now the grandfather and grandson were bound by something more: a disability--and Daniel Gottlieb's special understanding of what that means became invaluable. This lovingly written, emotionally gripping book offers unique--and universal--insights into what it means to be human.

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