Just the Way He Walked

A Mother's Story of Healing and Hope

Non-Fiction - Memoir
318 Pages
Reviewed on 12/09/2019
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite

Just the Way He Walked: A Mother's Story of Healing and Hope by Kathleen Pooler is a heartbreaking, heartwarming story of a woman who has to deal with divorce, illness, and her beloved son's addiction. It is one of the most beautiful stories of a mother's love. The story starts with moving and poignant words that capture the deep-seated fear and pain of the narrator: "For twenty-three years, I feared my son Brian would die from his addiction to alcohol." While suffering from a delicate health condition, the author had to worry about the welfare of her son. In this memoir, she captures the story and explores her relationship with her son and others.

The prose is beautiful and the author has the unique gift of exploring the different emotions of a mother as she watches her child on a path towards self-destruction. Scenes are well-written and focused, and the use of the epistolary style adds depth to both story and characters. It is easy to feel the motherly love, the devotion to her son, and her deepest fears. But Just the Way He Walked: A Mother's Story of Healing and Hope by Kathleen Pooler isn't a story of pain. It is one of love and hope and faith, and the satisfying end leaves readers with a powerful message to never give up. Kathleen Pooler's memoir is deeply human, beautifully written, and it gives inspiration to parents or anyone with a loved one suffering from an addiction. The humanity of the characters comes out strongly in the writing and I also loved the way the author explores the theme of parenting and family dynamics in this book.