Monday, July 3, 2017

DNF: Draw Your Weapons by Sarah Sentilles


Genre: Nonfiction
Published: July 4, 17
Publisher: Random House
Source: From NetGalley and publisher for review

A single book might not change the world. But this utterly original meditation on art and war might transform the way you see the world--and that makes all the difference.
"How to live in the face of so much suffering? What difference can one person make in this beautiful, imperfect, and imperiled world?" 
Through a dazzling combination of memoir, history, reporting, visual culture, literature, and theology, Sarah Sentilles offers an impassioned defense of life lived by peace and principle. It is a literary collage with an urgent hope at its core: that art might offer tools for remaking the world. 
In Draw Your Weapons, Sentilles tells the true stories of Howard, a conscientious objector during World War II, and Miles, a former prison guard at Abu Ghraib, and in the process she challenges conventional thinking about how war is waged, witnessed, and resisted. The pacifist and the soldier both create art in response to war: Howard builds a violin; Miles paints portraits of detainees. With echoes of Susan Sontag and Maggie Nelson, Sentilles investigates images of violence from the era of slavery to the drone age. In doing so, she wrestles with some of our most profound questions: What does it take to inspire compassion? What impact can one person have? How should we respond to violence when it feels like it can't be stopped? 
Draw Your Weapons stirs and confronts, disturbs and illuminates. A single book might not change the world, but this lucid, radiant, and utterly original meditation on art and war might transform the way you see the world--and that makes all the difference.

My thoughts:

I'm quite upset that this is my first official DNF of the year. I thought this one would be perfect for me. Taking on a different perspective than we usually see on violence and war and what we really want to change through these perspectives including those that believe in pacifism. I love seeing things you contemplate through new eyes and taking from a few artists that lived through different eras with their own perspective on violence in the world. I really just wanted a different perspective than I would have considered before. I wanted some food for thought with people who do not glorify violence and some who see it as a springboard for creation despite the destruction. Now this sounds like I've already put this book up for failure with my expectations but I would have been satisfied with a good tale even if I had heard it all before.

Unfortunately, I could not get into how she wrote the book. Sort of like a stream of consciousness that felt a bit like a diary from many perspectives. It just flitted from one POV to another. Even if they were connected I wanted a bit more grounding before I take off into the stratosphere and I didn't get very far before I put it aside. I can sometimes make myself try to get used to the author's intended format but I think with so much going on right now I just didn't have the patience.

If you still feel like this is something you would enjoy, I say go for it. Perhaps the format that doesn't fit me will fit perfectly with you.

πŸ“•

36 comments:

  1. I do hate when that book that is SO for you does not work out. Been there

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  2. Sorry this didn't work for you! Some formats just aren't suitable for every reader.

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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    1. I agree. Someone else might absolutely love it.

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  3. DNFs upset me so much too! I never pick up a book unless I think it's going to work for me and when it doesn't, it's just disappointing. I've had a fair amount of DNFs this year, sadly, but I hope your next read is better!

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    1. I really thought it would work. I hope your DNFs become much less.

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  4. That's to bad :-(

    Well, at least it was only one DNF so far I guess.

    For What It's Worth

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    1. Yea, but my reading average this year is bad. :p

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  5. I feel your pain about the DNF. I hate when that happens. Hope your next read will be better.

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  6. Sounds like it could of been SOOOOO GOOD, like talking to locals in town you've never been in before good, but the execution wasn't there. BOOOOO!!!

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  7. It happens. We aren't going to like everything we set out to read.

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  8. That type of format is so hit or miss. I am sorry this didn't work for you. Glad I am not the only one with a DNF today.

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    1. Yep, I've seen one other. Must be DNF day. :)

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  9. I hate to DNF, but understand needing more. I do like the premise and can see what drew you to the novel.

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    1. I also hate to DNF. It might work for someone else.

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  10. sorry it didn't match your expectations

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  11. That stinks. I hate when something could be really good, but fails when it comes to the execution.

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  12. Bummer on your first DNF :/ But so far into the year...not bad.

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    1. True, but my reading average has not been good.

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  13. Sorry this didn't worked out. Sounds like it got some potential though :(

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  14. Not bad to get through half the year before having your first DNF. Even so, this really does sound like a letdown. I don't think the whole stream of consciousness thing would have worked for me either.

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  15. Sorry this one didn't work out for you. I hate when I think I will love something and I don't. Hope you have better books ahead!

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  16. I just DNF'd a book that I think might end up a best seller. I just wasn't in the mood for it. Sometimes it's just not well written. Sometimes it's not what you wanted it to be. For whatever reason it just didn't work for you. Don't beat yourself up over it. There's too many out there to have to read one you don't care for! For the record, I used to worry about it. Not so much anymore.

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    1. Yep, and totally agree, but still hate to DNF. :)

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  17. Sometimes things just don't chime the way we expect them to and it's better to call it quits and move on to something else... Time is precious, there's no need to waste down-time on something you're not enjoying.

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    1. Yep. I do agree and have been doing it a bit more than I used to do it.

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