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To Begin To Know: Walking in the shadows of my father by [Leser, David]
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To Begin To Know: Walking in the shadows of my father Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Length: 330 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product Description

Product Description

Wasn't that the whole point of being alive? ... To ask the right questions, not just as a journalist but as a human being? To not just examine other people's dark, cold, self-hating, contradictory, disconnected places, but to examine one's own, given that this was possibly the most uncomfortable inquiry one could ever undertake? ... not to rush to one position or another, but to allow disparate ideas to co-exist, within ourselves and within others. To begin to know oneself, and to begin to know that we don't know.

More than a decade ago, journalist David Leser started writing a biography of his famous father, legendary magazine publisher, Bernard Leser. But David couldn't finish the project because he didn't want to employ his investigative and forensic feature writer's skills to unmask his father - to do so seemed utterly at odds with his desire to be the loving son he wanted to be. But freed from the obligation of having to think of his father as a book project, David started seeing him as a man, as both a son and a father, as someone loved and familiar but also flawed and unknowable. And the harder he looked at his father, the more he saw himself and how his own life had been lived both in tribute to and rebellion from the legacy of his father.

A lyrical, deeply moving and searingly honest memoir of two men, father and son, and their shared truths and burdens, To Begin to Know is a story of love and forgiveness, of acceptance and hope. It goes to the heart of a family - the hearts of all families - and asks questions crucial to us all.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3036 KB
  • Print Length: 330 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1760110337
  • Publisher: Allen & Unwin (1 July 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00JEPQ85I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #58,949 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
This is a wonderful book. I identified madly through some of it and found it basically fascinating and insightful and wise from page one. And deliciously self-deprecating when it wasn't wise. It was the story of a rigorous and profound father/son relationship. And it nestled itself so snugly into the times, with David Leser's characteristic clarity and insight. So I was led to thinking about all the blokes I know and their relationships with their father which are mostly difficult and painful. Great read.
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Format: Kindle Edition
To Begin to Know is in a class of those great, wonderful books which you can fly through in a night, or two; those great books which you don’t want to finish but cannot put down. If there was a book equivalent to the Danish hygge, To Begin to Know is one of those books, despite some of the sadness that swims below some of the stories.

It is brilliantly written, and flows like a conversation with the author - it sucks you into its pages and narrative without making you feel like a voyeur, making you connect with at least one of the themes, or the anecdotes, or stories within the book.

David has written some of the most beautiful, engaging, in-depth profiles on others – somehow, no matter who it is, it seems, he can make you dig deep inside to say and to open so much. Therefore, seeing his keen eye turn on himself absolutely had to be a fascinating, frank piece of writing about the life of a writer of others. And indeed it is, and it is a beautifully candid account of his life, his relationship with his Father, with his two daughters, and his relationship with himself - which turns to be the most captivating of all.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I read this book while on holidays. Leser's journalism is admirable and this memoir is new territory — startling, discomfiting and eye-opening: brutally self-confessional. Certainly the relations between an middle-aged child and an already aged parent becomes ever more resonant. But there are many episodes: imagine the author curled up in foetal position, later on, surfing. Then driving his car with his partner into contested ground in the Middle East and barely escaping with their lives. O, M, Gee. 'To Begin to Know' is highly entertaining in its very particular way — I read it inside of two days — and terrifically affecting. I can see on the book cover a line like this: "A brave and inspiring story" and it would be truth in advertising.
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By KS on 29 January 2016
Format: Kindle Edition
I loved it! There were places I burst out laughing and then other places that choked me up. I'm not sure I've ever read such a frank self portrait or one so threaded with insight. The portrait of your dad is so clear and loving and forgiving. And a surprise to find my mum in your pages, you know that your friendship gave her so much, that her last years in Australia were rich in experiences and friendships and yours was an important one.
Bravos and thanks for a wonderful read.
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