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For book club last month, we took a “BYOB” approach. No, not that kind of BYOB. A Bring Your Own Book type of approach – each lovely lady came armed with their own recommendation of a book they’ve read recently with three as many reasons as they want about why someone should (or shouldn’t) read the book. Again, let’s be honest: as long as there is wine and crab dip, I count the night a success.

It took me a while, but I finally decided what book to bring with me. I’ve been lucky enough to have some great opportunities (read: time on the elliptical) to read some great books over the past few months and it was a tough decision. So, without further ado, here’s why I think YOU should read Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope.

1. It’s a tremendous story of strength, perseverance and, quite frankly, a modern-day miracle. I remember the day of the shooting and the days that followed – the conflicting reports of the Congresswoman’s death, the story of the little girl, born on September 11 who was determined to never allow her life to be defined by such a tragedy, the continuing debate about the shooter’s mental competency and impending trial – yet, revisiting the past year through the eyes of Gabby and her husband, that all fades away to reveal the deep love, dedication and determination they both possess to help her recover.

2. It’s an easy and stealthly (and non-partisan) way to learn a little history/politics in the process…especially for non-Arizonians, like myself. While reading her story, sure I learned about her political career, her party affiliation, her policies. But more than that, I learned about her commitment to her constituents and to working for what she thought was right.

3. It’s well-written. Gabby (a well-educated, driven and intelligent woman) and her husband (a former astronaut – enough said) wrote it together, and the two of them make a great team – in more ways than one. They shared such an intimate story so openly and with such grace…I was very impressed.

So there you have it. It is definitely a book I’d recommend – it wasn’t an easy story to endure, but was a wonderful read.

“Hope and faith. You have to have hope and faith.” – Gabby