The Most Beautiful: My Life With Prince by Mayte Garcia

In The Most Beautiful, a title inspired by the hit song Prince wrote about their legendary love story, Mayte Garcia for the first time shares the deeply personal story of their relationship and offers a singular perspective on the music icon and their world together: from their unconventional meeting backstage at a concert (and the long-distance romance that followed), to their fairy-tale wedding (and their groundbreaking artistic partnership), to the devastating losses that ultimately dissolved their romantic relationship for good. Throughout it all, they shared a bond more intimate than any other in Prince’s life. No one else can tell this story or can provide a deeper, more nuanced portrait of Prince–both the famously private man and the pioneering, beloved artist–than Mayte, his partner during some of the most pivotal personal and professional years of his career. The Most Beautiful is a book that will be returned to for decades, as Prince’s music lives on with generations to come. 

I went into this book with no preconceived views on Mayte or Prince’s lives. I love his music but knew nothing of his private life or first marriage.  Mayte wrote a book filled with passion for her dancing. Her hard work and dedication to being the best that she could be with a hard work ethic that started at a young age. With a background of being an army brat, moving around the world with her parents and sister also gave her a base on the kind of work ethic and lifestyle that Prince had.

Their’s is a love story that was strong, beautiful and romantic. You get a glimps at how romantic Prince was. He was totally wrapped up in her as much as she was with him. It was beautiful and had its share of heartache with the loss of their son.

This book had me in tears at points but had my romantic heart in a flutter at others. Mayte talked about intimate moments without giving everything away and kept certain things private which, to me, showed respect to him and their life. It’s not a tell all book it’s a glimps into the very private life of a notoriously private man. It made me like the book all the more for it.

I discovered more music by Prince through this book and fell more in love with him as an artist. Mayte is strong and loving. She never stopped loving him and even with his death shows that love by writing a book that makes you love them both. Plus that cover….oh that cover! How beautiful it is!

5 stars

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The Orphan Keeper by Cameron Wright

imageBased on a remarkable true story.
Seven-year-old Chellamuthu’s life is forever changed when he is kidnapped from his village in India, sold to a Christian orphanage, and then adopted by an unsuspecting couple in the United States. It takes months before the boy can speak enough English to tell his parents that he already has a family back in India. Horrified, they try their best to track down his Indian family, but all avenues lead to dead ends.

Meanwhile, they simply love him, change his name to Taj, enroll him in school, make him part of their family—and his story might have ended there had it not been for the pestering questions in his head: Who am I? Why was I taken? How do I get home?

More than a decade later, Taj meets Priya, a girl from southern India with surprising ties to his past. Is she the key to unveil the secrets of his childhood or is it too late? And if he does make it back to India, how will he find his family with so few clues?

From the best-selling author of The Rent Collector, this is a deeply moving and gripping journey of discovering one’s self and the unbreakable family bonds that connect us forever. 

 

The story of Chellamuthu is raw and brutal. Kidnapped from his family and then shipped out to a family in  a country so far removed from his is heartbreaking to say the least.  Taj never fully fits in anywhere and it gets him agitated, not fully belonging in the US but also not feeling like a proper Indian should. As he grows and starts to forget his past things start to change when he spends two semesters at a university in London. His surrogate family is Indian and as he navigates their world through culture and food  memories slowly come back in flashes that he tries to remember but are just out of his reach.

Through many coincidences he meets Priya, his future wife and through her, the means to get back to India to try and find the family he was ripped away from.

This book is about filling a deep aching hole, knowing that something is missing but unable to fully grasp just what is missing.  The need to connect with family roots, and to find where he fits in and belongs.  It was a heartbreaking read one of loss and struggle but an incredible story from start to finish.

ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

5/5 stars

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Ghost Boy by Martin Pistorius

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Martin Pistorius came home from school feeling unwell, he had a sore throat and flu like symptoms. He was 13 when he fell into only what could be described as a ‘waking coma’ that left him with the metal capacity of an infant and his parents were told he wouldn’t live long. He was lost in his own darkness and didn’t even remotely ‘emerge’ until he was 18 when his brain started to awaken more fully to things around him. While he couldn’t communicate he could hear and feel everything around him.   He was sent to a rehab/home during the daytime when his father was at work and it was at this home when one therapist, Virna, noticed something was different with Martin, like a spark was in his eyes. She would always talk to him and interact with him in ways others didn’t. She noticed him smiling at certain things or when she asked him questions. She was the one that helped him find his voice and to help him break through his silent and lonely world.

This is Martin’s story as told by him. He talks about his struggle to come out of the darkness and to communicate with those around him, to let them know that he was alive in there. He would often create fantasy worlds when things got tough or if he was lonely. He knew that he was loved and his father was his greatest caregiver and he felt loved but wanted to show his father, his family how he felt about them. He talked about his siblings and about his sister Kim who would help him as much as possible.

He was, as I guess anyone would be in his situation, in tune to people around him to how they felt and what was going on in their lives, mostly because they didn’t know that he could hear and understand what was going on around him. He saw various emotions around him but the one that captivated him the most was love. He wanted to feel it, share it with someone and to be part of someone in that basic human way that most of us take for granted.

This book is heartbreaking, joyful and inspirational. The parts where Virna could see something there and he was screaming in his mind for people to notice I was screaming right along with him for someone to notice him, to see that he was trying to communicate. I cheered him on when he struggled with his computer programs to give voice to his thoughts. While there were many positives there were some really dark times of time spent in other care homes while his parents were on vacation. There was a part that describe abuse so disturbing that I was so infuriated and angered I had to put the Kindle down to calm myself. I felt the full spectrum of feelings with this book and it brought out things in me that I can’t put into words. In the end as hard as it was for him, his story is one of determination and hope.

5/5 stars

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