Finding Beauty in a Harsh Existence

Book Discussion

I spent a lot of time while reading Lisa Gardner's newest book, Touch and Go, trying to figure out Libby. She was broken but she also showed a resilience and strength that surprised me, as I believe it did her kidnappers. I appreciated the glimpses of her past that we received, particularly the one below:

"She covered the bone-white walls in Monet's water lilies, Van Gogh's sunflowers, Pollock's splattered drops and Dali's melting clocks. Color, flowers, shapes, patterns. The dingy halls and battered lockers and leaking drop ceilings of an underfunded public high school faded away. Her class became our refuge, and guided by her enthusiasm, we tried to find beauty in an existence that for most of us was harsh and, for many of us, tragically short." Pages 33-34

Libby's early years were not easy but her art teacher taught her how to look for beauty and then she taught Libby how to create beauty. When Libby was kidnapped, I think she drew upon that skill to help her get through it. She may not have found beauty during her experience, but she was able to recognize and acknowledge any goodness from the kidnappers that was directed toward her and her daughter.

winter red leaves beauty

Credit: LadyDragonflyCC

I like the idea of finding beauty in a harsh existence. There is beauty in the coldest days in winter and in the hottest days in the desert. If we actively search we can find beauty in hard circumstances. For Libby, and I think for many of us, that beauty can be a beacon of hope. Those small glimpses of beauty can remind us that there are good things in the world, even if there are moments when we have to search hard to find them.

Where do you find beauty?

BlogHer Book Club Host Karen Ballum also blogs at Sassymonkey and Sassymonkey Reads.

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