Posted by: kbumgardaner | January 28, 2011

Book Review: Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go

by Lucille O’Neal

In Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go, Shaq’s Mom shares candidly her life story as a child through her adult life as the Mom of Shaquille O’Neal and the joys and challenges that are part of having a famous son.
She shared the highs and lows of being an African-American teenager during a difficult time in the United States. Getting pregnant as a teenager (for Shaquille) was difficult, but she seemed to thrive as a Mother and really loved Shaquille and later her other children. It is clear that she would sacrifice anything for them.
This story chronicles the years of her life as she married, moved to Germany with her military husband, which is where Shaq began playing basketball and began getting noticed. I thought one of the most interesting parts of this was the fact that when they came back to the States, they found the prejudice much more profound than in Germany. I thought it must have been difficult for these children to have spent so much time in Germany where the color of their skin was not an issue, only to come back to the United States and face some of the prejudice of that time.
As Shaq began to get recruited and chose his college and eventually joined the NBA, she was fiercely protective of him which I’m sure helped him keep a level head at that point in his life. She even spent his first year in the NBA on the road with him which was admirable.
Though she admits she was an alcoholic, she shares how eventually her faith in Christ brought her out of her addiction. I would like to have seen more in the book about her journey out of her troubles and how her faith brought her through. She speaks of divorcing and the freedom it gave her, but doesn’t speak of seeking marital counsel or anything, which leads me to wonder why she considers that part of her life a triumph?
She went back to college as an adult and earned her bachelors and Masters degrees which was an impressive feat for anyone, let alone someone of her age. Overall, I did not greatly enjoy this book, but it has many good examples of what a person can do when they determine to overcome trials and depend on the Lord. I also enjoyed the Scripture section in the back of the book. It was a lovely compilation of Scripture.
I received a free copy of this book for purpose of review.
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