“It is 1965, the era of love, light and revolution. While the romantic narrator imagines a bucolic future in an old country house with children running through the dappled sunlight, her husband plots to organize a revolution and fight a guerrilla war in the Catskills. Their fantasies are on a collision course. The clash of visions turns into an inner war of identities when the author embraces radical feminism; she and her husband are comrades in revolution but combatants in marriage; she is a woman warrior who spends her days sewing long silk dresses reminiscent of a Henry James novel. One half of her isn’t speaking to the other half. And then, just when it seems that things cannot possibly get more explosive, her wilderness cabin burns down and Pamela finds herself left with only the clothes on her back. From her vividly evoked existential childhood (“the only way I would know for sure that I existed was if others lots of others acknowledged it”) to writing her first children’s book on a sugar high during a glucose tolerance test, Pamela Jane takes the reader along on a highly entertaining personal, political, and psychological adventure.” – An Incredible Talent for Existing
I have to admit that when I agreed to review this book from Open Book Pres, I had no idea who Pamela Jane was at the time, which made me feel a bad and a little weird about reading her memoir. If you weren’t aware, Pamela Jane is a famous children’s author who has written such classics as A Vampire is Coming to Dinner! and Fall is Here!, as well as many others. Of course learning this after the fact made me realize why I had never heard of her: 1) I don’t read or review children’s books on this blog, YA most defiantly, but not Children’s books and 2) I don’t have any children so I would not have a reason to be looking for children’s books. However, not knowing who she was did not deter me from reading and enjoying her memoir.
Pamela’s story is one of self discovery molded by the drama of the 1960’s, the birth of the feminist movement, and her own tale of love, loss, sadness, and the discovery of truth. From marrying at a young age to moving into the deep country of the East Coast, Pamela had the ability to overcome her struggles while still pursuing her passion for writing. She always knew that she wanted to be a writer, even thought the doubt of those around her, she still pushed forward to follow her dreams. Molded through her struggles, Pamela’s story is inducement to all writers who aren’t afraid to take their past experiences and use them towards the future of her dreams. Her memoir is a lovely, simple, straightforward story that will touch the heart. Mind you, there was a WHOLE lot of young adult angst in there, but that would naturally come from a person who got married young in the age of political uncertainty and identity of the 60’s. Her story has motivated me to continue to write, read, and pursue my dreams. She is the living and breathing example that in order to get what you want then you have to be willing to work hard and put in the time. Dreams do not just happen over night, but through dedication, patience, and passion.
Her writing style is unique, and simple with a creative flare for words and creativity. Pamela has a way of describing things that I never knew existed, with such pose and eloquence that I had never read before. It was obvious with her love for reading, that she could take the words of her life and write them in a way that would create beauty and intrigue to continue further. The book isn’t very long, or maybe it was but I didn’t feel that it was a long story, and should be one to add to your TBR list. Pamela has been entertaining children for years with her love and creative nature, now is the time for adult to witness her talent in her fantastic memoir. But do not let the weird cover hold you back from this incredible work. Yeah I know, it isn’t the prettiest cover I have seen or the most eye catching, but it will be Pamela’s words that keep your focus and attention.
I really enjoyed An Incredible Talent for Existing, and it was the perfect little read to have with it being so cold in California. I know, it is not as cold as it is everywhere else in the United States, but still. If you enjoy a curling up on the sofa with a good, short memoir then I would give this one a try.
Buy on Amazon: An Incredible Talent for Existing
Disclaimer: I was sent An Incredible Talent for Existing for free from Open Book Press for an honest review. This review is of my own work, and I did not copy or refer to any other reviewers/writers/bloggers for this post. All content provided on “A Comfy Chair” is for informational purposes only. I make no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site. I will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. I will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information.
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