All the Fishes Come Home to Roost: An American Misfit in India

by Rachel Manija Brown | Biographies & Memoirs | This book has not been rated.
ISBN: 1594861390 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingbookczukwing of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA on 11/29/2010
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1 journaler for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingbookczukwing from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA on Monday, November 29, 2010
Written by someone I know

Journal Entry 2 by wingbookczukwing at Charleston, South Carolina USA on Friday, December 3, 2010
Read this over Thanksgiving and have been mulling it about in my little brain since then. On the surface, this is a decently written memoir about a girl dragged off to India by her ex-hippie parents to live in an Ashram dedicated to the life and teachings of Meher Baba. There are some humorous parts, some heartbreaking parts. The thing that makes this different for me is that I know just about every person who appears in this memoir (book disclaimer: the names have been changed to protect the innocent, guilty, ignorant, insane, and normal who appear in the book.)

The last time I saw the author of this book, she was probably about 8. At 8, many of us are not at our best, but I do remember her to be bright, somewhat precocious and pretty remarkably left to thrive or fail on her own while her parents were busy elsewhere. Precocious children are not always easy to be around, and particularly if they're inquisitive, can be annoying. It's hard to be essentially the only child in an adult environment.

As to the depictions of the people in the book, she was clear enough that I could easily identify all but a few (and it turns out from reading her website that she made "compilation" characters for a couple of folks in the book, when introducing a new person into the narrative wouldn't necessarily add to the flow of the story. I can live with that.)

I know that there are those familiar with the book who will find it odd I am not upset about one particular occurrence in the book. If you know what I mean, and wonder why I am not angry/horrified/upset/bereft etc, write me privately and I'm happy to discuss it with you. I just don't want to do it here, in a public forum. (And no, I'm not in the book at all, though I do regret not knowing how much she loved to read. I would have sent her some awesome books.)

I've often thought, whether looking at the lives of saints, or any of the figures that have been declared God-incarnate, that were these souls not seen as holy, they'd be seen as insane. (I remember having discussions about this with my father back in 1979-80 after we each travelled to India, and to this particular ashram to visit. The Free Dispensary nearby is where I did so much volunteer work before I returned home to marry.) But having felt the power of God in many places and times in my own life, I have no doubt that holiness can be found in people and in places. And that it often goes unrecognized or misinterpreted. The thing about this book that do I respect is that Rachel Manija Brown has told her story, and acknowledges that there are other viewpoints, even for the recollections she shares. And that she recognizes and respects the beliefs of others. She may not agree or believe herself, but she acknowledges that what others feel/believe is true for them.

Journal Entry 3 by wingbookczukwing at Lawrenceville School in Lawrenceville, New Jersey USA on Monday, March 13, 2023

Released 2 mos ago (3/26/2023 UTC) at Lawrenceville School in Lawrenceville, New Jersey USA


I am not yet sure where on campus we will be releasing this book. A person that a character in the book was based upon went to high school here in the 1960's. It will be released on what would have been his 75th birthday, had he not died 14 years ago.

This book needs a new home/reader.

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