Reviews for Help, Thanks, Wow : The Three Essential Survival Prayers


Booklist Reviews 2012 November #2
Inspiriting, trenchant, and funny, best-selling Lamott takes an imaginative do-it-yourself approach to spirituality in her disarming and stirring essays. Unabashedly emotional yet practical and sharply attuned to the absurdities and tragedies of life, she focuses on prayer in this mighty little volume, defining it as "communication from the heart to that which surpasses understanding." If you are uncomfortable addressing God, Lamott suggests praying to "the Good." The point is to make contact with "the Real, with Truth, with the Light." To take a moment to focus and breathe. She cites three basic themes. Asking for help, she writes, "is the first great prayer." Giving thanks is essential, and not only when things are going well. One also benefits from summoning gratitude for hard truths and tough challenges. "Wow" is the joyful expression of wonder in response to astonishing moments great and small. With a stand-up comic's snap and pop, candid and righteous Lamott tells hilarious and wrenching tales about various predicaments that have sparked her prayers and inspired her to encourage others to pray anytime, anywhere, and any way. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

----------------------
Kirkus Reviews 2012 October #1
A refreshingly simple approach to spiritual practice in a pint-sized reflection on prayer. As the title of her book implies, Lamott (Some Assembly Required: A Journal of My Son's First Son, 2012, etc.) has taken an enormously complex and often debated topic and boiled it down to three basic elements that transcend doctrine or creed. Though in her previous books the author has been forthright about her Christianity, here she begins with a prelude that assures readers she's not even remotely interested in trying to tell them who or what God is; she's simply asking them to consider that there's a Divine Being willing to run the show. How is one to get that process going? Prayer. More specifically, Lamott touts the spiritual power in powerlessness, gratitude and wonder. The three sections of the book aren't solely about each one-word prayer; they're more a running conversation about their collective influence in her life. "Help" is a complete prayer, writes Lamott, and uttering it creates space for solutions that humans have neither thought of nor could pull off on their own. In what at first may seem like a jumbled mashup of stories and reflections, Lamott manages to deftly convey the idea that in trying to control things, we've largely lost our ability to see the good and the miraculous in everyday life. And those commodities go a long way, she writes, in terms of making a Divine connection that brings a measure of hope and peace. Though fans may be dismayed at the brevity of the book, there's more here than meets the eye. Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

----------------------
Library Journal Reviews 2013 February #1

The very popular Lamott (Bird by Bird) claims here that prayer boils down to the three exclamations of the title--it seems like a reductive claim, but Lamott, an unusually hip, demotic, urbane kind of Christian, is a naturally expansive and chatty writer. These blog-like reflections exhibit the author's usual fluency and charm. VERDICT A worthy successor to her prior works, this brief book will delight Lamott's regular readers, and likely draw new readers to her writing and to the ideas behind prayer.

[Page 56]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

----------------------
Library Journal Reviews Newsletter
The very popular Lamott (Bird by Bird ) claims here that prayer boils down to the three exclamations of the title--it seems like a reductive claim, but Lamott, an unusually hip, demotic, urbane kind of Christian, is a naturally expansive and chatty writer. These blog-like reflections exhibit the author's usual fluency and charm. ¬ VERDICT A worthy successor to her prior works, this brief book will delight Lamott's regular readers, and likely draw new readers to her writing and to the ideas behind prayer. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

----------------------
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2012 October #2

Lamott lovers get an extra treat this year even though the popular writer has already birthed a memoir about grandparenting (Some Assembly Required). Her newest will be a stocking stuffer for fans. It's small and very focused on God, who is clearly brought forward from his (or her) usual background presence in Lamott's writings. Equal parts 12 Step meeting in the church basement and walks on the beach, it's a prayer manual for people who wouldn't be caught dead reading prayer manuals. As such it may surprise, a bit, some of Lamott's most secular readers. But it takes a very familiar voice in a newish direction, and may attract younger readers whose religious preference is more offbeat than orthodox. It reads like it needed longer gestation or one more rewrite to go from casual-casual to casual-polished, but anybody who gets it as a holiday gift will likely just say, "Thanks. Wow." (Nov. 13)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC

----------------------