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Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance

Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance

Posted by Ashley on April 18, 2020

Reviewed by Ashley

Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance is one of the best books I read last year. J.D. is a Marine and a graduate of Yale Law School. This book is an informational memoir about what it means to live and be raised in Kentucky's Appalachia region and how no matter where you go the good and bad of this culture is embedded inside.

Generations of white working class workers before J.D. came to America to find freedom and jobs from Scotland and Ireland. His family has a long history of doing backbreaking work to survive the hard times put in front of them. He goes into the staggering statistics of these Appalachian descendants and what America is doing to help these people (which isn't much at all) who are some of the poorest and lower class people in the country.

Postwar, J.D.'s grandparents were very young and very poor. After they got married they decided to move to Ohio to give their family a better life. They raised their children and grandchild in a working middle class house. 

This is a success story of how J.D. with the help of his grandmother an eccentric granny from the Beverly Hillbillies type of woman who says all kinds of words that a grandmother shouldn't, believes in him no matter what and despite all of the things happening in her life (husband and daughter with alcohol and abuse problems) she focuses on J.D. to help him and herself through these hard times. 

This book was funny, heart wrenching in parts, inspirational, and eye opening. Its interesting how we judge people but have no clue that they have been set up for failure from the start. Their government fails them, their lack of believe in themselves fail them, and other people fail them by putting them in a class below themselves. When I started this book, I had the same preconceived notions as everyone else about what a hillbilly was. Now I understand what has put them into this way of life that they just can't shake. 

Would you like to read this ebook or listen to the audiobook? Find it here

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