a young mother's dreadful plight...her memoir of the peroid of her life when she lived in her car and fed her children ramon noodles on a daily basis. Her fears and decent into this hell and her heroic trip back. Her strength and determination is admirable. She rose above her problems, fighting her way out, doing it with honor and hard work, never expecting a hand out from others.
It reminds me in some ways of Nickel and Dimed.. except she was not doing it for research purposes.. she was in the situation for real. I think things like this happen more often than we know.. because we are afraid of what other people will think... or don't really know what to do. It was a very quick read.
An A W E S O M E read! Makes one think of what can happen when least expected. There are many families like her, moreso, single mothers with children that this is happening to all over America and it is heart-breaking. I won't spoil the ending but, several cheers from me!
This is a touching story. Although I did not agree with many of Michelle's decisions, especially regarding her children, I could sympathize with her, and could admire her courage. I'd recommend this book.
I thought this book was good. It shows that anyone can become homeless, no matter what your background is. It gives an good insight into the life of one woman, struggling to make ends meet with 3 children under the age of 5.
A very readable book that matter of factly relates events that could very easily happen to anybody. That the author can relate her history without a trace of bitterness or self pity is a tribute to her ability to rise above.
Honestly, I had a hard time feeling sympathy for Michelle. She claims in the title that she was "without a net", but I believe that she had plenty of support systems that she could have utilized before letting her pride allow her to become homeless. She both begins and ends the story as a middle-class housewife, and it seems as though her homeless experience was more of a "who knew? It could happen to anyone!" experience rather than an educational one.
David T. (zoburg) reviewed Without a Net : Middle Class and Homeless (with Kids) in America on
Helpful Score: 2
A very moving story about a young mother who finds herself homeless with 3 kids. It is a story of falling through the cracks of society and digging your way out. A story of the kindness of others when you least expect it.
This is a highly recommended book!
This book is really an eye-opener! It makes you think about your misconceptions of the homeless and how easy it is, especially in today's economy, for more people to be finding themselves in situations like Michelle's through no fault of their own. The author's ability to have a sense of humor about everything that was happening to her and her dedication toward making life better for herself and her children was also inspirational and made the book very enjoyable.
As an abused child, a single parent, a former domestic violence advocate, and as someone with a sociology background, this really hit home. It shredded my heart and then healed it. How close I have been and still may be. This story of a ferocious mother's love and her courage to forge a new life in an inferno of uncertainty is astounding. I get weepy thinking about what a wonderful legacy of perseverance and hope and trust in life these children have had...what resilience they will have. I wish I could buy 1000 copies of the book and give then to shelters of all kinds. THANK YOU Michelle Kennedy.
This was a great book and once I started it, I could not put it down. After living in an abusive life Michelle took her children and left that life to start a new one with her children. With no money or a home to go to she found a job but had to live in her car with her children for quite a while. It was hard but Michelle was going to keep her family together. This is a must read for anyone wanting to read a true story of homelessness, broke and dispair....the ending is great too!
Michelle Kennedy was a promising young student at American University when she married her husband Tom. After she has dropped out of college to become a full time mother, Michelle's husband decides that their family is too dependent on material things and announces that he has quit his job. He moves the two kids and Michelle (who is pregnant with their third child) to northern Maine, where they live in a rustic cabin with no running water or electricity. Michelle is determined to keep their family intact despite the increasingly irresponsible behavior of her husband, but after an accident that occurred which Tom was supposedly supervising the kids she decides that she and the children would be better off rejoining society.
Michelle drives her children to the coast of Maine, where she plans to find a job and get an apartment. She finds work as a waitress, but her small hourly wage and tips are barely enough to feed her young family, let alone pay for child care and a security deposit on an apartment. Though she receives virtually no financial assistance from her husband, Michelle's pride prevents her from asking for money from her parents, so she and her kids find themselves homeless and living out of the car.
Once I started this book I could not put it down - I stayed up until 2 am hoping for a happy ending. Michelle's story demonstrates how difficult it is for the working poor to survive, and how few bad decisions or a streak of bad luck could put almost anyone in the same position. This is a very moving story.
Barbara H. reviewed Without a Net : Middle Class and Homeless (with Kids) in America on
This story is a reminder of how easy it is to slip from a comfortable, uneventful life into a life where every day is a struggle. Hearing Ms. Kennedy's story brings home the saying that most of us live only a paycheck or two away from hunger and homelessness.
An amazing story, and one that is unfortunately more common than I realized. Ms. Kennedy and her children were able to survive their period of homelessness due to her ingenuity, her hard work, her determination to keep her little family clean and fed and sheltered, her cheerful attitude, and her love for her children. I'm glad that she also had the courage and ability to write honestly about her experience.
A W. (aprilw) reviewed Without a Net : Middle Class and Homeless (with Kids) in America on
I thought this was a very good book. It shows the reality of how making a few bad decisions can ruin a life.I personally wanted the author to just "get it", she seems a little slow in the common sense department, but she does what she knows best at the time. A truly sad story with a nice ending.
This book is hard to put down. I finished in a few days. It was tragic that people and families struggle to find adequate affordable housing. NOt in america should anyone have such a hard time to find a place to live. Michelle has written other books. I find her intelligent, truthful speaking about her hardships and that so many people put her down for. We all can learn something here and we all make mistakes.
I loved this book. It tells the story of a young mom with children survive when her husband leaves them without a place to live, no money, food or clothes. I could not put this book down and read it from cover to cover. If you like true non-fiction you will enjoy this book.