"...woven into meaningful literature, so tightly that it can't be separated, is a telling lesson...Always! Good stories teach!"
The Rent Collector is definitely a "good story!" I am always excited when I get to add another book to my "classics"* list.
The Rent Collector tells the story of a family struggling to survive while living in a garbage dump in Cambodia. Sang Ly (the mom) wants a better life for her family, especially her very sick little boy. Like most of the people living in extreme poverty, she never received an education and thus cannot read. But, while searching through the trash, they find a book and with it the opportunity to change their lives. It's too good to give spoilers, so you will just have to read it!
I had the opportunity to build a "home" for a family living in a dump just like that in Mexico. It is a horrible way to have to live and sadly there are millions of people around the world living in circumstances that most Americans can not fathom. We have poverty in America, but even the very poorest among us live in "luxury" when compared to these people. We take so much for granted. Everyone - rich or poor - has the opportunity for an education here. But sadly, there are many who do not appreciate it's value. Education is the key to freedom and prosperity (education - not job training!)
As the rent collector says..."Words, Sang Ly, are not only powerful they are more valuable than gold."
I know the words of this book have definitely changed me and that is the power of "meaningful literature."
*Classic Book = a book that can be read again and again with new lessons and principles being learned each time. A classic is a book that makes you think; a book that inspires you to be better.