4 out of 4 stars
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Lucky Gift by Donna Wilkes is a novella that tells the story of 12 passengers on Bus 208 who took the trip of a lifetime.
Michael and Jordan met in a computer science class at the University of Memphis where they were lab partners. After graduation, the two men decided to go into business together. The business was based on a clear tracking strip they had invented. It could be placed on any surface and tracked using an application. So Michael planned a trip to Kansas City to attend a trade show looking for investors to raise capital so they could expand their business. He purchased a one-way bus ticket to Kansas City to depart the following Sunday morning. Little did he realize the impact this trip would have on his life and the lives of all the other 11 passengers on Bus 208. This story is about the “gift” that everyone has inside themselves.
What I liked most about the book was the lesson behind each person's story. I think the most important lesson of the story was that people are not always what they appear to be. We make assumptions about who people are based on their appearance. For example, the ticket agent warned every passenger that an ex-convict, just released from prison, would be traveling on the bus with them. Michael assumed the large African-American man who looked like he pumped iron every day was the ex-convict. He was wrong.
Another lesson was that people are placed in our path for a purpose. Some call it “luck” or “divine providence,” but I believe people are strategically placed in our lives just when we need them or when they need us most. I wondered how many of those experiences we miss out on by not making ourselves available to connect with other people. What if the 12 passengers had kept to themselves, as people normally would on a bus, and not tried to connect with each other?
The story also demonstrates that there is greatness in each one of us. When life demands it, we need to dig deep and act on that greatness for it to be fully revealed. When a police chase ended in a car crash, a young woman was pronounced dead at the scene. What if the young resident, Dr. Nathan Willis, hadn't pulled the sheet back to re-examine her and determined that she was still barely alive?
The development of the main character, Michael Bell, was very good. I felt like I knew him. I was constantly cheering him on to be successful. As I read the book, I diagrammed the connections between all of the characters to each other and their connection back to Michael. It was quite a complicated web by the end of the story.
I felt like I was reading a fairy tale for adults wrapped in an episode of the Twilight Zone. I couldn't wait to turn the page. There is nothing about this book I didn't like. This book was well-written and professionally edited. I didn't find any errors at all. I would recommend Lucky Gift to anyone who enjoys an uplifting story that reminds us of how interconnected our lives really are. Once you understand that every action you take affects the life of another person in some way, it changes the way you live your life. I am giving this book an enthusiastic rating of 4 out of 4 stars. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, and I plan to follow this author in the future.
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