Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Gather Together in HER Name: Maya II

In the second volume of her autobiographical novel Maya is growing up and paving her way into life. This book made me think of a phrase I heard somewhere: “these are the in-between years; the years between who you think you are and who you will become.”.

It’s her in-between years. She is learning, loving, being fooled, taking risks, losing and going through all the pain that is growing up, as if she was in a grand casino gambling her life away and hoping that the rule “the house always wins” would be broken.

It’s nicely written but it’s not remarkable,. There is still the crudeness and nakedness of details, people and stories but it lacks some of the romance present in the first book. Maya’s book got me thinking about  role models and whether having one influences anyone’s life. She is growing up amidst scoundrels, drugs addicts, gamblers, an erratic horny Mother and, a fairly absent brother and apart from her Mamma ( Grandma) who seems to be her lighthouse, she has no family structure and I knew (because I am reading her book) that she made it, through all and despite all.

There are a few subjects in this second book that come and go: prostitution and drugs. It appeared to me that she spent time with one and flirted with the other. The process of becoming a prostitute shows her inexperience and ignorance and it shows the ugly side of human nature. How good people get themselves involved and manipulated. It’s quite sad, but gladly for her short- lived.

The other theme is drugs. I almost put the book down and thought about stopping reading it when thought she would become an addict. Please don’t get me wrong, I am not passing judgement on who does that, but I don’t like reading about it as, it’s ugly, helpless and selfish for me.

I am glad she knocked on that door and there was no one on the other side to open.  

In all there is no shame in living your life and gaining experiences along the way. Whatever that may be; whatever people one may encounter. I thought so much about my own life while reading this book. I looked back  my early years and I thought about how ashamed I always felt for having less than perfect family, parents who made mistakes and disappointed me,  the anger and longing for having had little guidance when I was growing up (which is all forgiven and forgotten as I now understand they were giving the best they could).

It consoles me to think that maybe this beginning will help me (or already has) to build a better, a more stable and happier end. As for Maya, I will have to continue reading to find out; for me, I will just have to carry on living.

I would recommend this book to people who is afraid of life. 
You will understand what I mean when I say that we must live in order to learn.  


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