Book Review: Same Kind of Different as Me

This is the story of the friendship between a poor black man and a rich white man. It's about reconciliation, about the courage to step outside your comfort zone and trust another person, and about not judging people by appearances. It's also about perseverance, and coming to terms with death and the presence of evil in the world. It's a fascinating story, and one that you should read for yourself. I'm not going to give any more of it away than I already have.

It is an autobiography of sorts. The two men alternate chapters in telling the story of how they grew up, lived their lives in separate worlds – one an international art dealer and the other a homeless man – and eventually met. That aspect of the book makes it very hard to review, for me. I don't find it difficult to evaluate (and even criticize) people's arguments or writing styles when I write a review, but criticizing this book – in which both men shared deeply about themselves – would feel as if I were judging these men. I don't want to do that. Sure, there were times in the book where I thought, "I would have handled that situation differently," but in the end, who am I to judge? I didn't live these men's lives. I haven't gone through what they've gone through. After all, one of the main messages of this book is to not judge people by appearances. I can only say, in the end: thank you, Ron and Denver, for sharing yourselves with us, warts and all. It was touching, and it was better than fiction.

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