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Marriage and Other Acts of Charity: A Memoir

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  • Posted January 17, 2014

    Well written by someone who has credentials.

    Kate Braestrup is unique as she is a writer of talent on a mission, and that is to educate anyone who will read her books about topics that seem to hit us hard everyday.

    This book is about marriage. She wrote other books about things like death of a loved one, but this one sticks pretty much to the one subject, marriage and its charitable nature, using, as good writers do, what she knows. So yes, it is a memoir. Yes it is a sermon on life. She is as you eventually discern, a Unitarian Universalist ordained minister - and those UU type people (we people really as I am UU myself) look at life more as a continuing education of "what it really is" rather than "what it should be." So there is that.

    So now that I have either alienated you or sucked you in, let me add the kicker. It is written from a woman's viewpoint and that makes a huge difference. There are insights to a woman's erotic/romantic attraction toward men

    But this book is not exactly a page turner and it is a rather quick read. I read it as part of our UU Women's Book Club - and I am glad I did. But it is not a 'oh wow' read and it leaves you thinking, now what was that?

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  • Posted May 18, 2010

    Off the trail advice.

    Kate Braestrup had some excellent points to make in this memoir, lessons she has learned from experiencing and observing the male/female relationship.

    One that stuck with me was that "100% of relationships end". We are lucky if they end after a long, happy life together, but the fact is some relationships are cut short. Whether it be through untimely death, divorce or things beyond our control we should learn to appreciate every moment. We should focus on the happiness, not the frustrations of a relationship if we want it to thrive.

    Unfortunately for Kate, she learned some of her lessons the hard way. Fortunately for us, she shares her learned wisdom and sprinkles it with some faith filled touches.

    I would not consider this a "religious" book, though she is a minister and faith is obviously important to her story. What I can say is that this felt a bit like a series of parables with a very neutral point of view. There may be meaning to each of her chapters, but nothing that felt as if she was leading the reader to a biased conclusion.

    The only complaint I have about the book is that it can come off as a bit intellectual because of the language. For example, most of us do not use the following words in everyday conversation(at least not in my New England town): imprimatur, salvific, palimpsest,inchoate,construal, cosseted and extracanonical to name only a few. I would have preferred that this be written in a lighter tone. It's very down-to-earth in theme, so the "big words" felt out of place.

    That said, this was an interesting read and provided some thoughtful insight which I enjoyed and I think you will,too.

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    A writer who makes me think Love comes in many forms. Honest and provocative writing

    I also recommend Kate Braestrup's book "Here If You Need Me"

    Her writing makes memoir worth reading , Thankyou Kate,

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    Posted November 25, 2010

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    Posted January 25, 2010

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    Posted January 24, 2010

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    Posted January 22, 2010

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