Sunday, May 6, 2012

One Hell of a Journey by L. Christian Amougou


L. Christian Amougou weaves a tale of determination, ambition, and faith in his memoir, One Hell of a Journey. Amougou was born in Africa, moved to France as a small boy, and back to Africa a few short years later. He dreamed of moving to America and becoming a movie star. Not an uncommon dream, but Amougou's conviction that he will achieve his dream draws the reader into the pages. The reader will alternately cheer him on and chide him for his mistakes. Amougou acknowledges his missteps and shows how he learned from them. He explains how he set goals and worked hard to achieve them. Though his naivete got him in trouble several times, he never lost his integrity, faith, or dreams. He held fast to his goals and often used imagery of achieving his goals to get him through rough times including homelessness, hunger, betrayal, and being jailed. Though the reader will sometimes find his choices hard to rationalize, he writes about them in a compelling way that forces the reader to understand his thoughts on the matter if not his reasoning. One Hell of a Journey is a well written story of one man's experience with the African way of life and the politics and corruption that often stand in the way of people bettering themselves as well as the fact that there are goodhearted, generous, kind people everywhere. Amougou proves once again that the human experience has more in common around the world than not in the pages of One Hell of a Journey.
Also available at Brigadoon Books, host of Third Thursday Poets, located in Reed Opera House in Salem, Oregon.

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