(PCM) The Gospel According To Josh is a memoir of a young man who had to deal with his father’s suicide as well as his desire to end his own life. It is a book that never lets the reader down as he or she Journey’s with Josh down a hard a tear stained highway.
Josh Rivedal’s book begins with a synopsis of his childhood and his strained relationship with his dad. It moves forward quickly to the divorce of his parents and then comes even more quickly to his dad’s suicide. Josh handles this part of the book with a sense of dark humor. The humor is never disrespectful; it is honest in its telling. In fact Josh’s style of writing of really bad situations in a way allows the impact to come full force but without hurting the reader is a wonder all by itself, how he eventually puts this power to use is a marvelous gift to all of us.
The author then tells of the issues and the court hearing regarding his father’s estate. He tells us of his relationship with his girlfriend which feels the strain of his family issues and eventually comes to an end. Josh then opens his heart completely about his depression, his confusion on what to do with his life and his own desire to bring his life to an end.
The story doesn’t end there, the miracles start to happen. Josh opts to reach out for help instead. He finds joy in life where he can, and because he does not wish for anyone else to go through what he has gone through, he turns his father’s story and his own into a one man play and begins to find ways to add a suicide prevention message to the story as well as to have a panel of experts to help field questions after the show.
This book has many other layers that I have not even begun to explore here. It should be required high school reading and it should be read by every parent in America. It should be read by the broken hearted as well because with in these pages lies hope.
The word Gospel has a simple meaning; it means “Good News.” So the Gospel according to Josh is truly the good news according to Josh. The good news is simple, Josh proves that with work and a plan life can get better. He proves through his writing that suicide is not really an answer, and most importantly he points the way for others to find the answers they need.
I highly recommend this book for anyone who has contemplated suicide and for anyone who has a friend or a family member that has attempted suicide or has actually completed the act. There is hope and healing in The Gospel According To Josh.
The post The Gospel According to Josh By Josh Rivedal, A Review also appeared on PCM Reviews.