From Goodreads: Fate can be unkind. Would you dare to look back and risk her wrath?
When you’re a child of the favela, in the Valley of Steel, you know that Fate comes like a whirlwind, lifting some to great heights and slapping others down with no reason.
Ivan, rescued first from an orphanage in the slums of Rio de Janeiro and then from the bleak streets of Ipatinga in Brazil’s Valley of Steel, has been favored by Fate. When a call from Brazil interrupts his privileged life in America, he learns his best friend has committed suicide in the rugged Valley of Steel and only he knows the real reasons why.
This is the story of one man’s journey home after a self-inflicted exile. The story of a boy who saw more than any child should, and the man he grew into-and how that man came back to the Valley of Steel to avenge his childhood and stare down the demons of his past.
It is a story of survival, redemption, and joy. Of childhood memories that burn in the soul-and what happens when one man has courage enough to fan the flames and face the fire.
King’s memoir is a very powerful book detailing his life growing up in poverty in Brazil’s Valley of Steel. Although his childhood was difficult, with a mother who beat him incessantly, a father who was distant, authority figures who brought more terror than protection, and friends who came and went, King adds humor to this retelling of events, inviting the reader into his life to laugh and cry alongside of him. Perhaps the most riveting aspect of the memoir is that, unlike many memoirs today, King does not dwell on all the bad in his life, harboring hatred or dislike to those that hurt him. His respect for people, their beliefs, and their experiences is refreshing.
After much time away from the Valley of Steel, King returns to pay his respects to his childhood friend and confront his past. Told through a series of stories, King’s memoir is a riveting tale that all should read. Four stars.
I received a copy of this memoir from the author in exchange for an honest review.