Shivers and Signposts: The Journey Continues by Len Richman
Category: Adult non-fiction, 156 pages
Publisher: Friesen Press
Release date: September 2015
Content Rating: G
Shivers & Signposts: The Journey Continues is Len Richman’s second exploration of a life measured out by a distinct rhythm of his own devising. Picking up where his first memoir, Raindrops Glimpses Moments: An Unconventional Memoir of an Unplanned Journey, left off, Richman shows in Shivers & Signposts that he still has much to do, and much to say.
Richman attacks life with uncommon vigour. Never motionless, he moves forwards - and sometimes backwards - suffusing each manoeuvre with unique energy…vitality and constant evolution.
Shivers at the thought of growing old, of becoming stale…occasional alienation and loneliness, Richman, is driven onwards by “a pressing need to redefine and redirect his innermost self”, a self that he continually re-evaluates through the lens of modern technology, literature, theatre and film.
These are the signposts that guide him through his fascinating quest for renewal of spirit and self…Let us hear his decisive commentary on modern social and cultural mores, his unapologetic tackling of issues from racism to materialism to present-day psychoanalysis. Let us listen to the music of Richman’s own Love Song, about the love of a life well-lived – and still well-worth living. Let us be challenged, through Richman’s examination of his own life, to ask of ourselves: How should we presume?
From the “Introduction” by Stuart Lubarsky, M.D.
Reviewed by Laura Fabiani
Part memoir, part social commentary and part exploration of attitudes of healthy ageing, this book is a collection of Richman’s reflections on one’s man need to live a full and balanced life as he entered his 70th year. Well-written, filled with thought-provoking quotes from years of reading classical and respected writers, this book, like its predecessor, provided me with gems of wisdom, but this time on a healthy outlook on life as one grows older.
Richman speaks openly and honestly about his feelings as he entered into retirement, about his preoccupation with time and its passage, about the difficulties in making decisions to slow down and not letting others dictate how he was to spend the rest of his life. Always having been boundless in his energy and his love for teaching and learning, the journey of his life now took an unexpected turn. And it is this phase in his life that Richman focuses on.
He summarizes his theme when he states in the last pages of his book, “Shivers and signposts of discomfort encompassing loss, fear, endurance, seeking, and arrival at a tenuous level of flourishing have been logged in these pages.” I was touched by these author’s feelings and reflections, but far from feeling sad, I was uplifted as he “decided that retirement is a nasty, negative word that should be replaced with redirection, reinvention or renewal”. This prompted an inward thought of fifty shades of darn right!
Of course, this also rang true with me as a kindred spirit and an entrepreneur at heart who started a global business in my mid-forties and redirected my life with work that pulls at my creativity and love for the written word. From a generation that labels forty as the new thirty, I could appreciate both Richman’s paradigm shifts and his acceptance of reality, but one that spurns a person to keep on the journey rather than to wait out one’s days, so to speak.
Richman has penned the kind of memoir that I will benefit from re-reading at a later time in my life when his words will have an even greater impact on me.
Disclosure by Laura: Thanks to the author for sending me the book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.
To read more reviews, please visit Len Richman's page on iRead Book Tours.
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Meet the author:
Len Richman has a long history with the Thomas More Institute of Montreal: student, course designer/ leader, Board of Directors member, and Chair of the Accreditation Committee.
He holds a teaching certificate from McGill University’s MacDonald College; a B.A. from the University of Montreal (Literature); an M.A. in education from Concordia University (Outdoor Education), and a post-graduate Comprehensive Certificate from TMI (Culture and Identity Studies.)
Travel, work and field background continue in parts of Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, South Pacific, and Canada’s northern communities. An educator in the areas of literature, wilderness/ outdoor pursuits, adult learning programs, international and multi-cultural studies for decades, a “redirection” of interests after 60 resulted in his becoming engaged in the performing arts: acting, directing, producing and writing. He is presently associated with Quebec Drama Federation (QDF), Black Theatre Workshop (BTW), Advisory Board of Pointe Claire Library, English Language Arts Network (ELAN), Quebec Writers’ Federation (QDF), Playwrights’ Guild of Canada (PGC), and Alliance of Canadian Cinéma Télévision & Radio Artists (ACTRA).
Born, bred and residing in and around Montreal (his favourite city next to New York, Prague, Budapest, and Dawson City, Yukon), he and his wife have three sons who have provided almost “free entertainment” with six grandsons and two “bonus” granddaughters from six to twenty-six years of age. He hopes to maintain sharing his wondering and wandering from his previous book, Raindrops Glimpses Moments: An Unconventional Memoir of an Unplanned Journey, to the present Shivers and Signposts: The Journey Continues, and beyond.
Connect with the author: Website
Enter the Giveaway!
This is a wonderful feature which interests me greatly. Since I was born in Mtl. and lived there for many years, as well as being very close in age to the author whose life sounds fascinating and captivating. Thanks.saubleb(at)gmail(dot)comReplyDelete
A book for my reading list. Interesting thoughts to contemplate. Thank you for your review.ReplyDelete