Strength in What Remains (Random House Reader's Circle) (Prebound)
September 2009 Indie Next List
“Tracy Kidder shines a penetrating, compassionate light on Deo, a Burundian, whose extraordinary resume includes cow herder, medical student, target in the genocidal horror of the mid-1990s, refugee, homeless Manhattan grocery deliverer, Columbia University student, medical student again, and philanthropist. Kidder's portraits of Deo and the amazing people who helped him are appalling, enlightening, and inspiring.”
— Banna Rubinow, The River's End Bookstore, Oswego, NY
Winter 2011 Reading Group List
“Thank you Tracy Kidder for writing this book. It's an incredible tale of Deo who survived both the Burundi and Rwandan massacres, and then overcame all odds to ultimately attend medical school at Dartmouth. Deo eventually meets Paul Farmer -- the subject of Kidder's Mountains Beyond Mountains -- who supports his dream of building a medical clinic back in Burundi. This wonderfully written book really puts our lives into perspective!”
— Mary Cowen, Anderson's Bookshop, Naperville, IL
In Strength in What Remains, Tracy Kidder gives us the story of one man's inspiring American journey and of the ordinary people who helped him, providing brilliant testament to the power of second chances. Deo arrives in the United States from Burundi in search of a new life. Having survived a civil war and genocide, he lands at JFK airport with two hundred dollars, no English, and no contacts. He ekes out a precarious existence delivering groceries, living in Central Park, and learning English by reading dictionaries in bookstores. Then Deo begins to meet the strangers who will change his life, pointing him eventually in the direction of Columbia University, medical school, and a life devoted to healing. Kidder breaks new ground in telling this unforgettable story as he travels with Deo back over a turbulent life and shows us what it means to be fully human.