Reviewed by Kathryn Bennett for Readers' Favorite
Summon the Tiger by Wendy Sura Thomson is a memoir that shows just how brave one person can be. Wendy Sura Thomson was born in the year of the tiger and the events that have taken place during the course of her life perfectly embody the fierce and fearless force that is a tiger. From the day she was born, Wendy had to face adversity head on because she was born with congenital skeletal abnormalities and, when she was only a toddler, one leg had to be amputated. With parents who had their own demons to face, Wendy dealt with more than anyone should have to, but she found solace and escape in books. So how much adventure, triumphs and failures can one life hold? Dive into this real story and find out.
I never used to read many memoirs, but in the last few years I have found myself enjoying them more and more, and books like Summon the Tiger are exactly why. Some of the events that happen throughout Wendy Sura Thomson's life are the stuff of fiction, and yet these things happened and the author bravely tells all, allowing you to walk through her life right next to her. I can't even begin to fathom how much strength it took to make it through such a hard childhood. Then managing to summon bravery enough to literally jump ship on an abusive family and cut her own path in the world, a path that was by no means certain or easy.
I have always felt that when we face trials in life we can do one of two things. We can allow those trials to define us, become who we are and fall into the misery that often results. Or we can use those trials to form us and strengthen us, understanding that they are something we have gone through, but it is not who we are, to walk through the fire and come out the other side forged and stronger. Wendy Sura Thomson is a prime example of choosing to let the experiences of pain and hardship forge one into something stronger. Despite an abusive childhood and a hard to bear illness, she has risen and become successful in life both professionally and personally. I can't find the words to accurately say how this book made me feel; it is a wonderful example and I applaud how much it took to write this story as well as live through the events in it. If you want to feel inspired and find the strength to work through your own trials in life, read this book. I promise that you will enjoy every moment of it.