TABLE TALK: ER BEATUS Creative Studio

I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to pick the brain of a young, vibrant creative and entrepreneur – Eureecher Premanathan. You’re more than likely to find this entrepreneur carving her own path in life. Exploding with wisdom far beyond her years, this is a brain to pick for advice on life, faith and marriage. This jam-packed well-spring of knowledge comes to us as the Creative Director of ER BEATUS Creative Studio.

Let’s talk branding

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I already know that I’ve peaked your interest with the company name – ER BEATUS Creative Studio . The ER (pronounced “errrr”, as in a statement of confusion) are more than just her and husband Rowen’s initials, but translate from the medieval Latin to “the”, whilst Beatus (pronounced be-ar-tis) translates from the Latin to “blessed”. So quite literally, ER BEATUS is “the blessed”.

Based on Psalm 18:33 (“He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to stand on the heights”), ER BEATUS has taken the deer as the company logo during the company rebrand a few years ago. With the scripture holding a special place in her heart, Eureecher made the step into researching the deer a little deeper. Being a sure-footed, agile and swift mountain creature (holding true to Psalm 18:33) they are able to climb to greater heights with deeper surety. Also coming to symbolise regeneration (based on the principle of the regrowth of their antlers) the deer is a feisty, cautious and adventurous creator, known for its individuality – the deer is a call for trust in instinct and self.

These are factors that build deeply into the way Eureecher runs the business and carries herself in the industry. The creative industry is not one that’s easy to work in, but the ability to step out in faith with surety is one of her resounding characteristics.

Let’s talk creative careers

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With a degree in fine art, the passion for design was sparked at a very young age (you could say she was DRAWN to it). A clear passion for design and a heart fuelled by the journey business is taking together with the ability to be around creatives (to collaborate, on social media or share a creative space) drives the creativity of the business, but more so the creative behind the business.

Having started in family owned businesses and having done everything from sales to merchandising, Eureecher says that “I came from a very business minded and artistic family, so I honestly believe it’s where my entrepreneurship stems from. I always knew I wanted to run my own business one day. I’ve always been a creative, what took it to the next level and gave me the love to have my own creative business was planning our wedding.” The stressful experience clearly catalysed the decision (throw into the mix the sense of freedom, achievement and knowledge of being made for more) to move into the business field, all through the experience of designing wedding invitations.

Let’s talk self-employment

“When you are a small business or start up you have to do everything yourself, particularly when the specific skills you have are the reason a client approaches you and it cannot be passed on to other staff”, Eureecher comments on the challenges of being self-employed. This is all besides that fact that self-employment means no work = no pay.  That being said, whether through helping you build the business, creating personalised stationery or custom luxury items, nothing beats the joy and excitement of a satisfied customer.

I have asked her about balancing work and home life. The reality is that most self-employed individuals will take their work home with them. In all her wisdom she’s defined this quite simply for me – Work and life needs to be balanced. It’s important to work hard to achieve your goals and dreams, but remember to take time to both enjoy life and take care of yourself. “Too much of one thing isn’t good.”

Let’s talk faith and business

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About a month after getting married, Eureecher acknowledged her unhappiness in her job in recruitment. As a creative, she struggled with the idea of being behind a desk for the rest of her life, and her husband, Rowen knew it too. With the support of her husband and immediate family, she took the step into entrepreneurship. The lesson that she’s learned, that I think applies to everyone is that is that “not everyone will believe in you or be on the journey with you. The people you least expect support from may be the ones that get you through the toughest times.”

Being self-employed, there are many times that her faith has been tested, but God has been faithful to Eureecher time and time again. The reality is that running your own business is not as glamorous as it sounds; there are long hours of work, sweat and sometimes tears that go into it. “My faith is strong and even though tested all the time and in different ways, I know the God I serve and that if it is His hands then there is no better place for it to be.”

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She has attested to seeing God’s hand in every season, and that knowledge keeps her going. The greatest lesson to learn is to be faithful with the little that He’s placed in your hands and He will bless it. She goes on to state that “…that is my biggest testament. I have tried my best in every season to be faithful with what I have been given and where I am, and no matter how tough things were/are I have always tithed from my business. From the biggest amount to the smallest.” Standing in faith and being consistent despite the things going on around her are characteristics that I enjoy about her.

When making decisions, or seeking the voice of God in business, it’s never as clear as writing on the walls. Often times she searches her spirit for a sense of peace or unsettlement. Fasting and praying is also a set way to take when making big decisions (something both she and I would like to do more of). It’s also a beautiful thing that both her and husband, Rowen, pray about decisions individually and discuss confirmation received before taking steps. I can definitely see that she has a clear sense of morals and values that reflect in the way ER BEATUS Creative Studio is run and the beauty is that she doesn’t feel any pressure from the Christian community in being a creative, if anything she strives to be authentic and to conduct business ethically.

One of the biggest things I have taken from being able to walk alongside Eureecher and is that everything… EVERYTHING happens in His timing. It is HE who opens doors and allows for opportunities to arise. We can truly do more than we think because greater is He who is in us. Serving has always been a part of her and Rowen’s lives and has forged relationships and friendships that are an amazing support structures. Rowen and Eureecher truly do life together; knowing that every act of service on a Sunday at church or during the week is adding to someone’s experience or encounter with Christ – that keeps you filled.

Let’s talk advice for the entrepreneurial heart

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“Go for it! If not now, then when??” She’s right, fear held her back and holds us all back. Whether that’s the fear of rejection or failure, it keeps you from moving forward. The best guidance I took from her was to take it one step at a time and trust God on the way. It’s also important to get a good network of people around you; people that will support you, pray for you and encourage you along the way – “The support of other people who have maybe been there before makes the journey less scary. FEAR IS A LIAR!”

 

Being full of beautiful nuggets, she also advises that you be your most authentic self. The pressure to conform to a predisposed ideal is huge, but all you need to do is be you.

“Take advise, admire others, look up to them but never feel like you have to be exactly like they are. Know who you are and whose you are. He created you perfectly with all your quirks and differences. It’s so cheesy but you have to go on a journey to find out who you are .”

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The future of the company stands on Psalm 18:33 – “He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to stand on the heights”. With an amazing new studio and fresh and vibrant website, ER BEATUS Creative Studio is set to take on the future of luxury design.

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Spiderman: Far from home review | no spoilers

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Welcome to a spoiler free review of Spider-Man: Far From Home. This movie picks up where Endgame left us (heartbroken, lost and wondering what the future holds). Left to deal with the devastating loss experienced in Endgame, we find Peter (Tom Holland) on a a path to reconcile with the losses he’s experienced whilst taking a break to be the average teenager. While craving a bit or normality in his life and embarking on a school trip across Europe, Peter is dragged back into the world of the superhero by Nick Furry (reprised by Samuel L Jackson) and Agent Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) when a catastrophic attack leaves a city destroyed, all while introducing us to the comic-classic Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal).

This is the Spide-Man movie we needed (I may be a wee bit biased). Combining classic Marvel humour with heartwarming and angsty moments this movie brings together the action we know and love in the MCU whilst tying in the greater storyline in one large Eurotrip styled movie. We see Peter struggle with maintaining his role as your friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man weighed against the greater responsibility of the world desperately needing the presence of the Avengers.

There are a lot of cinematic shoutouts in this movie. Whether to the PlayStation games with beautiful web sequences, shoutouts to Into the Spiderverse, or to the beginning of the MCU as we know it (throwing it back to the original Iron Man that has led us here) or with the incredibly satisfying surprise appearance from a character straight out of 2002’s Spider-Man. The casting was perfect, with a well-paced plot, comic relief, spectacular action sequences, brilliant acting and jam-packed with Easter eggs (if you’ve already watched the movie, you can find out what I’m talking about here)

This is a 4.5 star rating for me and I’ll probably be watching it again very soon. This is what we needed to see next from Marvel to wrap up the Endgame storyline. This is the Spider-Man movie we deserve.

 

Perceptions…

What is your perception of me?  Perception is defined as the way in which something is regarded, understood or interpreted.

We all have a perceptions, notions that define how we interact with our environment. Whether they’re about life, people, situations or objects we have ideas that have been formed through the way we view the world. Similarly, we present ourselves to the world in a specific way. We try to control the perceptions people have about us by controlling our behaviour around them, hiding our quirks and authentic selves to shape their perception of us. Our interactions with people and the world around us is governed by our concept of how they perceive us. Ask me, I’d know.

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The reality is, often times we react to people on the basis of how we THINK they want us to react, how we ASSUME they feel about us. Thoughts… Assumptions, they’re personal and individual things. They cannot be understood unless clearly articulated, whether by actions or through our words. We live in a society that’s self-obsessed and self-conscious. Thinking only of ourselves in relation to others. We see the world through stained glass.

We have all been created, and chosen by the Creator. They world which He formed, was formed to magnify His name. Our self-obsessed nature, our constant drive to be better, to do more, to get healthier and reach further is marred by the desire for self. There’s nothing wrong with goals and dreams and having a vision for your life. We have been called as a glorification of His power and name. Self should never overshadow and overpower the glorification of His will. We have been chosen amongst all of creation for a reason. Our quirks should not be hidden and our character should reflect Christ in us. There’s no purpose in hiding who we are for a city on a hill cannot be hidden. Our lives are meant to be lived as a light in the darkness.

Now stop to think about perceptions again. How does the world perceive you? How do the people around you see your life? You don’t have to be shouting it from the rooftops (which you can, please don’t let me stop you) but you should reflect some manner of “heaven on earth” if you will. I’m talking about the little things – how you react to traffic or how you treat the waitrons at a restaurant. The littles things have the ability to leave profound and lasting impacts on people.  Tender hearts are receptive hearts.

I say this as much for you, as I do for myself – let the person we show the world be authentic and a reflection of the Creator. We are not perfect in ourselves, but perfect love has saved us for greater than mere existence.

Crystelda

Keep those goals up!

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Welcome to June! We’re officially at the halfway mark. This is around the point where you tend to get tired or forget why you even started the race to begin with. If you’re anything like me, you’ve just started scrambling under the reality of things you haven’t accomplished yet. Do you even remember the goals you set out to accomplish this year? If you have your goals together and are on the path to greatness, great – this post probably isn’t for you. If you’re the exact opposite of composed right now, grab a cup of coffee and take a seat, let’s chat.

This is usually the time of the year when I re-evaluate the goals I wanted to accomplish, how realistic were they and if there’s something of greater value tugging at my mind. Some things I thought I wanted, are no longer of importance to me. Other things have become increasingly important and are pressing on me to strive to achieve them.How many times have you put your health and fitness on your resolutions for the new year? Be honest! I’ve done this for as long as I’ve been making resolutions. Now, how many times have you actually accomplished the goal? This June, let’s stop to evaluate the things we’ve marked out as goals for the year, break them down into more manageable and achievable goals. This has to be an exercise based on reality and where your life is currently. Basing your goals on something unrealistic will never help you accomplish them, but rather push you away from the finish line.

One of my goals for the year has been to read 30 books. At my current rate, and based on the gigantic nature of fantasy novels, I’ll probably never reach the goal this year. I’ve changed directions and opted to including listening to audiobooks. It seems simple, but it’s a more achievable way of working towards the goal of 30 books than trying to dedicate all my waking hours to consuming literature.

So, what goals have you set for the year, and how are you changing your habits to achieve them? Let’s keep running the race. Keeps those knees – I mean goals – high!

Crystelda

BIO-OIL DRY SKIN GEL | REVIEW

 

Are the winter blues bringing you dry skin? How about your try this out?

I’ve spent the last month exploring skincare in a new way. In particular, I’ve been testing out the Bio-Oil Dry Skin Gel. This is a month in the year where my skin suffers from an activity as simple as hand-washing. I was blessed enough to be sent a 200ml tub (for myself) and 50ml tubs (to share) of the new Bio-Oil Dry Skin Gel by Beauty Bulletin and Bio-Oil South Africa. We’ve spent the last month individually giving this product a monitored test, so get ready for an honest review.

I’ve been using this every morning on my entire body. My skin is moisturised and comfortable for the entire day. The scent is the classic Bio-Oil scent and a particularly thick gel texture. The texture and scent both ware off after a few minutes when it’s settled into the skin. Of all the body care products I’ve tried, this is one that I have been the most surprised by. I’ve also gone out to purchase a 50ml tub to keep in my bag for reapplication throughout the day if needed. Personally, I’ve loved this. My skin feels amazing for most, if not entire day. This is a miracle considering what and air-conditioned office environment can do to your skin in winter.As a side note, I’ve also noticed that the dry, discoloured are on feet had lightened up over the past few weeks. Its been something that I’m particularly conscious  of, so I’m excited to see what happens in the next few weeks.

The Bio-Oil team has formulated this oil-based gel as a way of targeting dry skin effectively. The team have found that dry skin is caused by a lack of moisture in the surface layer of the skin. This lack of moisture could be caused by anything from the soaps and cleaners we use to climate exposure or general aging. The problem is, we as consumers are generally unaware of why we use the products we use to try to treat our issues. A part of rethinking skincare is understanding that your skin cannot absorb water, so water-based creams and lotions won’t bring long-term relief. The beauty of this product is in the fact that it has opted to create an oil-based formula containing ingredients that will actually nourish your skin. You also need the SMALLEST amount of product to apply to a large surface area. How amazing is that?!

The gel is something that I’ll definitely repurchase, particularly with the intention of keeping in my handbag. It’s performed WAY better than any other hand cream I’ve tried recently. This is also very easily accessible; being sold in Dischem, Clicks, Pick n Pay, Shoprite and Checkers. Retailing for only R59.99 (50ml), 100ml (R109.99) and R189.99 (200ml) this is also more affordable considering that I haven’t made a dent in my 200ml tub and it’s been a month. A little goes a long way. I’d recommend this product for those who struggle with dry skin. The relief I’ve felt from dryness has been immediate following application. I’m finishing this campaign genuinely impressed with this product that I’ve found to be very reliable.

Don’t believe me? Here’s the thoughts of my friends and family:

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Thanks for sticking around to the end. I hope this has made you reconsider how you approach winter. If you do decide to try this out, let me know how it goes.

Crystelda


Pictures taken by Justin Tyler

Book Review: Masterpiece, Francine Rivers

I’m not often one to lean towards Christian fiction. In all honesty, I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the idea. Part of me loves it whilst the other part of me wants the fiction I read to be a blind adventure with no moral and no greater life lesson. Then I remember CS Lewis’ epic Chronicles of Narnia and still my frantic heart.

Francine Rivers is one of the authors that have surprised me the most in this area. I’ve heard of the launch of her latest novel, Masterpiece, whilst roaming around social media. I’ve been curious about it, but never enough to want to outlay the cash to purchase a copy from my local book store. Enter the fancy-schmancy Kindle my dad gifted me, and boy has come in handy. News flash – eBooks save trees AND are substantially cheaper!

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I haven’t been this surprised by a book in a particularly long time. This was not the book I expected when I purchased it. Masterpiece gives you real characters, with real challenges, living in the real world. As much as this is a story about Grace and her son, her struggles as a single mother and the challenges she faces in life, Roman’s journey was what compelled me to continue reading.

This book gives you the story of two people on polar ends of life. Each person on their own spiritual journey. One with faith, one opposed to it in its entirety. Their journeys are unique and marked with pain, loss and wandering. Rives does an exceptional job of differentiating Roman and Grace, their lives and their spiritual walks. These characters are as different as two people can be and Rivers brings them together through a number of wonderfully uncomfortable and brilliantly innocent interactions. Roman and Grace mirror real people living in the real world. That’s what drew me to this book, that’s what made me love it in the long run, that’s what lead me to the end and that’s what left me feeling the aching loss of a friend at the end of the novel.

If you’re looking for an easy read with relatable characters living in the world you know, if you’re looking for a book with a spiritual journey, if you’re looking to reconnect with your spiritual walk, this is the book to make your pitstop.

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selah.

The Art Exhibit

No, it’s not a name. It a verb. It’s an active moment to pause and reflect. On what you may ask, reflect on life, the moments that have brought you here. Take account of the places you have been, the people you have met and the things that have past. Reflect on the God that has brought you to this moment in time, reflect on everything that He’s carried you through, and once your interlude is done, keep moving.

The moments when we stop to take account are the moments when we are able to learn from our experiences. That’s why I created this blog, as a space for us to learn from each other and to learn from out past, learn in our quiet moments and learn from each other. We line in a society that continuously promotes productivity and personal growth. On an exhausting level. Don’t get me wrong, growth and improvement is important for us to mature and find fulfilment and accomplishment, but at some point we need a break – we need to pause and rest. Selah.

TO PAUSE.

Rest is a fundamental part of our being. It servers to refresh our spirit and body. We are called to slow down and rest. It allows us a moment to catch our breath, reset our thinking and refresh our minds. This is such a pivotal part of our ability to keep moving forward. Without a stop street on the road, we would collide with other drivers, without a pause in music we would be unable to understand the prelude before we move on. We are called to rest. Burn-out is an unfortunate reality of our continuous strive for productivity. Rest and refresh lead to improvement and the ability to rationalise and seek clarity…

TO THINK.

An action – process information, direct your mind onto a particular subject and actively connect to a though, reflect and ponder. We are called to intentionally assess our past actions and events, critically view the information presented to us, actively stop to take account of all surrounding circumstances. Be intentional and logical, applying wisdom and taking the opportunities we have to learn and grow from all experiences. Multitasking will only get you so far, will only allow for a limited period of divided attention. We limit our growth when we seek to be involved in too much, process too many differing stream of information at the same time. Pause to rest and then critically evaluate past, present and future.

FOREVER, AMEN.

There is finality in our Selah. Closure presents itself at the end of our period of rest, at the end of our period of evaluation. There is finality in letting go of the past and choosing to move forward. The past cannot be changed, only learned from. We cannot go back to it, but we can selah and let what has past become a lesson.

Let your Selah be a resounding roar drawing a community closer and a you heart nearer to the Creator.

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Why 5am, though?!

 

It’s 5am on a Monday morning, am I out of my mind? This is way too early, work only starts at 8am, how much time do I really need? Every morning has been the same process, wake up way too tired, way too stressed, way too annoyed with the day ahead. This is clearly not the way anyone wants to start their day, let alone start EVERY day. Most people will convince you that they wake up early to do their devotionals or exercise (urgh, fitness… I know) or that waking up early is pointless because the extra sleep is more valuable. Honestly, if you’re someone that can sleep in and be ready in 10 minutes, or wake up and make time for Jesus first thing in the morning, then I commend you. I am way too grumpy in the morning for devotionals and I much prefer to do them at the end of the day – it leaves me feeling far more balanced and calm before bed.

I’ve picked up a neat trick from Julie Solomon on Instagram that I’ve been pleasantly surprised by – Morning Pages. I know, it sounds super cliché, but I can honestly say it works. Rather than journaling in the evenings, when you’re just exhausted from a long day, I start the morning with it.

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So, what are morning pages? Simply put, open up a book and write down whatever is at the top of your head until you’ve filled three pages. I’ve chosen to start by aiming for two pages which I found far more achievable for my morning state of mind. It takes me anywhere between 10-20 minutes, depending on how groggy I am on that particular morning, and it’s been an interesting experience. I’ve discovered things that were bothering me without even consciously considering them to have been on my mind and the beautiful thing is that these are just for you, no one else will ever need to see them.  Morning pages have presented me with an ideal way to create a space for everything that’s clouding my brain, everything that’s been sitting in my sub-conscious all night or stewing in the day past gets taken out on a page. It’s a cleansing experience, as odd as it will feel at first. It’s created a cleaner headspace to start work on and made me feel more focused in the morning.

 

There are a few bonus benefits of waking up this early (despite the obvious con of having to be in bed early):

  1. You have time for breakfast in the morning, and not the on the go kind. I mean real meals with yogurt and fruit, eggs and coffee.
  2. You can start the morning slow. We’re a people, a society that rushes everywhere, all the time. We try to do too many things in a single day, we’re inundated with content and the need to constantly be productive. Taking it slow and steady helps you be clear.
  3. You can delay your screen time until after breakfast. Try as hard as possible to only look at your phone, your laptop, the TV after 7:30. Lowering screen time is good for you and gives you the opportunity to read and create more and consume less.

 

Try it. I find that little challenges are easier ways to accomplish greater goals in the year. Start small, with simple steps that are achievable and will seem less overwhelming.

That’s why I chose 5am, what about you?

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Featured Items: Spiral notebook  , similar novelty pen , similar bedding 

 

Bible with me

At the start of every new year we spend all our time creating resolutions and goals, plans for outcomes we desire for the year. The thing I set out to do every single year is complete the Bible in a year. Sound simple enough, I know, but it’s the thing I’ve relentlessly failed at accomplishing. This is why I love the option of tackling this with friends!

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My dear friend, Megan, had a real Jesus moment earlier this month when she dropped me a text about Youversion reading plans. We decided to tackle this as a group. The wonderful thing is that this has created a far less intimidating type of accountability. When you’re accountable to friends, even if it just begins as a silent and benign streak of competitiveness, there’s a comfort in knowing there are others on the journey with you. Discussion and comradery often make the this type of goal far less tedious to work towards. A support group is essential to help you get through on days when you’re just not in the mood to leave bed, or even crack open an app, let alone the Bible. Make this task seem a little less daunting, make relationships your priority and take a step to accomplish something that seems so simple, but may alter your lifestyle with the simple creation of a habit. The ease and accessibility of an app such as Youversion, which is my favorite and I have raved about it multiple times, or an alternate app like SheReadsTruth will keep you on your toes. And by having an app on your phone (between your most used apps) you’ll never be able to avoid the task or claim to be too busy or have no time. The Word will be accessibly and in your pocket and just like that, you’ll carry it wherever you go.

Take up this challenge with us. Whether that’s with your friends, by yourself or with your family, make a move towards reading more and disconnecting from the world to Selah when needed.

If you’d like to join me over on YouVersion or have a plan that you loved, drop me a DM or and email and let’s connect!

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Book Review: The Tattooist of Auschwitz, Heather Morris

“The tattooist of Auschwitz is a story of two ordinary people, living in an extraordinary time, deprived not only of their freedom but their dignity…” (Morris, 262). This is the perfect summation of this story. To call it simply a novel would be a gross understatement to the testament of the life of Lale. The pages of this book hold more than simply his story, but also the stories of those he interacted with, the lives of those held within the fences and walls of concentration camps between 1942 and 1945. Deeper still, it rings with the untold tales of the stories that will never be told.

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I’ve delayed reading this book for the longest possible time, drawn to the tales it may hold, but unable to commit to the potential accompanying emotions. The immediate draw card here is the true-life love story of Lale and Gita, who found each other against all odds and in desperate times. This placed on the backdrop of the need to survive at all odds drive a resounding story. In all things, Lale’s compassion and desire to aid as many fellow prisoners as he could, often times at risk to his own life, creates a story shrouded by hope, courage and love – proving that even in the most dire situations, the best parts of humanity can rise up to take the helm.

Is this a book I would recommend? Yes, for a number of reasons. It is so much more than the tales of a survivor, there’s a lesson that can be learned by anyone, a lesson that is personal unique to each reader, one that you will have to discover for yourself. Morrison has presented the stories told to her by Lale during the interview process beautifully as well as gone through the process of researching and fact checking what was included in the book (as she explains in the author’s notes). It’s an easy to read book, which is amazing for a break from heavier reading, despite the heavy subject matter. All that being said, it reads fluidly and you will not want to put this down. It’s also formatted beautifully (I know, I’m amazed by the simple things) and can be read over a weekend.

If you do pick this up, drop me a message and let me know what you thought and if you would recommend it to others.

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Image taken from https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tattooist-Auschwitz-heart-breaking-unforgettable-international/dp/1785763644
The book can also be purchased at any CNA, Exclusive Books or Bargain Books store.