Anne Lamott's books always leave me awestruck. How can anyone be so open and honest about their own failings? Lamott relates all her weaknesses, rants and questions herself and God, and has a deep personal faith. Now, she and her son, Sam, the subject of her book, Operating Instructions, join forces to write Some Assembly Required: A Journal of My Son's First Son. And, now I'm in awe of the wisdom of that boy I've been reading about in her earlier books, a nineteen-year-old who became a father, and has the burden, and the gift, of a son in his own life.
Most of the writing is Anne's as she tells how she reacts, first to the news that her son, Sam, and his girlfriend, Amy, are going to have a baby, then, to the first year in Jax' life. But, Anne also interviews Sam to get his reactions to this hectic year, as he struggles with school and fatherhood and his relationship with Amy. Both Lamotts have one thing in common, though. They love Jax, and they enjoy watching him grow. Sam says he watched him grow from a speck.
Honestly? You're either a fan of Lamott's writing, or it won't move you at all. Some Assembly Required is a typical Anne Lamott book. She's loud and blustery, irreverent and funny, and prayerful and needy. In other words, she's a human being. And, now she's a grandmother, still unafraid to put her feelings down on paper, no matter how fearful she might be about day-to-day living. For those of us who are fans, it's one more chance to feel the grace of Lamott's life, to see in her words that we're all flawed people, doing our best.
Some Assembly Required: A Journal of My Son's First Son by Anne Lamott and Sam Lamott. Riverhead Books. 2012. ISBN 9781594488412 (hardcover), 288p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The publisher sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.