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2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 25 books toward her goal of 175 books.

Guest Book Review: Ten Cultures, Twenty Lives by Daina Jurika-Owen

A little while ago, I was pleased to share with you a guest post by author Daina Jurika-Owen, whose book Ten Cultures, Twenty Lives explored the realities of life as a refugee. Today I’m pleased to bring you Sharon’s review of the book.

I was especially interested in this book at this particular time because of current US immigration policy. I must confess, right up front, that I was anticipating something different, and was pleasantly surprised both at what I learned and at how much I was moved by the stories in the book. The major thing I learned was how colored my opinions were by misunderstanding and a lack of accurate information. I was operating on a first premise that refugees fleeing to the U.S. were looking for handouts or an easier way of life. What I learned upended those misconceptions and really changed my view.

The book offers a solid explanation of the trials and tribulations that refugees face – not only regarding their ability/difficulty in leaving their own countries but in the requirements they face before than can come to – and stay in – this country. I think many people – myself included, prior to this read – underestimate the difficulties refugees face in their journey to become legal immigrants, or how those difficulties are often the reason that some choose/are forced to live here illegally.

Most Americans have immigrants in their family trees – and for many those branches fall within a couple of generations – mine included. As I read this book, I couldn’t help but think back on their stories about coming to America and how they were received – even in a pre-9/11 world – with distrust, disrespect, anger, and fear. Daina’s book resonated with me on a much more personal level once I realized that, as her tales of resettlement echoed and built upon those sentiments.

I learned a lot, and thank you for the opportunity to review this book.

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