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Jesus Land: A Memoir (Alex Awards (Awards)) [Hardcover]

Our Price $ 19.55  
Retail Value $ 23.00  
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Item Number 115250  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   356
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.5" Width: 6.04" Height: 1.17"
Weight:   1.15 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Sep 6, 2005
Publisher   Counterpoint LLC
ISBN  1582433380  
EAN  9781582433387  

Availability  0 units.

Alternate Formats List Price Our Price Item Number Availability
Hardcover $ 23.00 $ 19.55 115250
Paperback $ 15.95 $ 13.56 5800236 In Stock
Item Description...
One of the most compelling, page-turning memoirs to come along in years-by turns jarring, shocking, and funny-a keenly moving ode to the dream of perfect family

Sinners go to: HELL. Rightchuss go to: HEAVEN. The end is neer: REPENT. This here is: JESUS LAND.

Julia Scheeres stumbles across these signs along the side of a cornfield while out biking with her adopted brother, David. It's the mid-1980s, they're sixteen years old and have just moved to rural Indiana, a landscape of cottonwood trees and trailer parks-and a racism neither of them is prepared for. While Julia is white, her close relationship with David, who is black, makes them both outcasts. At home, a distant mother-more involved with her church's missionaries than with her own children-and a violent father only compound their problems. When the day comes that high-school hormones, bullying, and a deep-seated restlessness prove too much to bear, the parents send Julia and David to the Dominican Republic-to a reform school there.

In this riveting memoir, first-time author Scheeres takes us with her from the Midwest to a place beyond our imagining. Surrounded by natural beauty, the Escuela Caribe is governed by a disciplinary regime that demands its teens repent for their sins under boot-camp conditions. Julia and David's determination to make it through with heart and soul intact is told here with immediacy, candor, sparkling humor, and not a note of malice.

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More About Julia Scheeres

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! JULIA SCHEERES has a B.A. in Spanish and an M.A. in journalism from the University of Southern California. She has written for the "Los Angeles Times," "San Francisco Chronicle," "New York Times" and "Wired," and has twice been a finalist for journalism awards presented by the USC Annenberg School for Communication. She is also the author of "A Thousand Lives." Scheeres lives in San Francisco, California.

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > General   [38596  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Memoirs   [10747  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Specific Groups > Women   [5596  similar products]
4Books > Subjects > Children's Books > Religions > Christianity > Jesus   [787  similar products]
5Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Literary   [150469  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Underrated  Dec 7, 2008
Julia Scheeres' memoir has easily become one of my absolute favorites. The reader should be warned: this book is incredibly painful to read and will leave the reader feeling rancorous for the entire Midwest, every religious fanatic, and inevitabley Julia Scheeres, but above all else this beautifully chronicled story of the unbreakable bond between her and David, her brother and best friend, will be one of the most rewarding and life-affirming experiences ever.
poorly written  Dec 1, 2008
This is just another memoir written for shock value. Just like "A Million Little Pieces" incidents are embellished and exaggerated to gain sympathy from the reader. It is not believable, and certainly not accurate. Reader Beware!
That's life.  Nov 18, 2008
You will not be disappointed with this book; I was glued to it all weekend. I really admire Julia for her honesty and her courage to let the reader into her life. I can't begin to imagine how hard it was to write this memoir.
Reporting Live From Inside Jesus Land  Oct 15, 2008
This book reduced me to tears at several points, probably because of my several shared experiences with the author. Jesus Land is the well written story of growing up under an oppressive, twisted, and abusive form of religion in America's Heartland. It's the story about how religion can bring out the best and the worst in people -- although mostly the latter is drawn out of the characters in this book.

Scheeres story takes her from the Hoosier State to the Dominican Republic with only one constant in her life: her beloved brother, David, her adopted black brother. Not only is this memoir about the effect abusive religion can have on a young psyche, it's about the bond that develops between two people who go through that experience together.
A Must Read Memoir  Sep 18, 2008
Jesus Land is Julia Scheeres' memoir of her childhood, with the main theme being her relationship with her adopted brother David. It has witty prose and graphic reality, leaving you with the haunting feeling that there are places in the world where things are terribly wrong.

The majority of the book is set in mid-80's rural Indiana. Julia lives with her father, who is a doctor, her stay at home mother, and her adopted brother David, who happens to be black. There is another adopted brother, Jerome, who occasionally makes appearances. Julia's parents are devoutly religious, preferring mission trips and Bible studies over their children.

This is not a feel good book. Julia's father, who is absent through most of the book, beats Jerome and David. Jerome rapes Julia, yet her relationship with her parents is so bad that she feels she cannot tell them. There are frequent encounters with racism, as most people at the time were not comfortable with siblings of different races. David and Julia are shipped off to the Dominican Republic to attend Escuela Caribe, a fundamentalist school outside of U.S. government control for a reason. There they encounter more physical and psychological abuse, often reduced to animals in the way they are treated.

But there is plenty of good to take away from this book. It is essentially the story of the love between David and Julia. It is hard to imagine two siblings being closer, especially considering what they had to endure. They were the same age, and nearly inseparable. They were even able to develop a code of "sign language" between them during the times they couldn't speak to each other at Escuela Caribe. There is also the opportunity to learn what a home looks like when love is absent and religious rules and traditions are used instead.

I strongly recommend this book, but it is highly graphic. Be prepared to be confronted with real life, unfiltered and without apologies.

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