5 Star Review
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Editorial Book Review:
By Lisa Patrick
This engrossing book explores the nuances of belonging, family, and identity. The author lets readers into his life and provides a glimpse into his journey of self-acceptance through his genuine honesty and emotional contemplation.
This memoir is fundamentally a celebration of the human spirit's tenacity. The author bravely and gracefully navigates the turbulent rivers of identity, navigating everything from the difficulties of growing up in a conservative home to the liberating experience of coming out. He allows readers to experience his victories and hardships via evocative tales and profound observations, finally finding comfort and strength in the acceptance of his actual self.
This memoir's universal appeal is what makes it unique. Although the author's experiences are obviously unique, readers from all walks of life can relate to the subjects he touches on in his book. Readers are pulled to the author's genuine voice and engrossing storytelling, regardless matter whether they are struggling with questions of sexuality, family dynamics, or the quest for belonging.
Furthermore, "Sunday Dinners, Moonshine, and Men" is a celebration of resiliency as much as a narrative of personal struggle. Through his experience, the author learns that living truly and accepting one's own truth is what leads to true belonging rather than compliance. By doing this, he encourages people to accept their individuality and muster the bravery to live their lives as they see fit.
To sum up, "Sunday Dinners, Moonshine, and Men" is a moving memoir that touches on the common experience of acceptance and self-discovery throughout life. It is certain to strike a chord with readers of many backgrounds due to its universal themes and moving storytelling. Whether you're struggling with questions of identity, family, or community, this memoir provides a timeless and relevant message of inspiration and hope.
About the Author
Michael “Tate” Barkley has been in recovery for 22 years. His personal experiences with alcoholism and addiction have driven him to write and speak on the themes of personal integrity, ethics, self-actualization and mental wellness. His first book, Successful Ethical Decision Making: Get What You Want Without Getting in Trouble, published in 2008, breaks down the process of making difficult decisions into easy-to-implement tactics that can be used by anyone in any situation, business or personal. Tate is a dynamic, engaging speaker and a highly sought-after trainer with a wonderful ability to inform and inspire audiences. His powerful, inspirational talks and results-oriented seminars provide the tools for immediate change and long-term personal growth. Tate has shared his story of recovery at Regional and National-level organizations dedicated to recovery, including the Texas Opioid Treatment Alliance. He has also spoken on ethics and situational decision making to a wide variety of organizations including: the VA Boston Healthcare System; the U.S. Forestry Service; the Texas Association of Appraisal Districts; American National Property & Casualty Insurance; Institute of Management Consultants; Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce; Universal North America Insurance Company; the Stonewall Lawyer’s Association; and, the Houston Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, where he shared the stage with former Enron CFO and convicted felon, Andrew Fastow, who also speaks on the topic of business ethics.
A litigation attorney for 30 years, Tate is a founding partner of Bain & Barkley law firm. He is also a lecturer at the University of Houston, teaching Communications Law and Ethics, where he was awarded the School of Communications 2019 Valenti Award for Outstanding Teaching by a Lecturer. Tate presently serves on the Board of Directors for Avenue Community Development Corp. which is dedicated to providing affordable housing for veterans, seniors and working poor, he also serves as Vice President of the church council for Covenant Church, an ecumenical liberal Baptist congregation in Houston’s museum district. He is a past board member of the Texas Council for Advising and Planning for the Prevention and Treatment of Mental and Substance Abuse Disorders. He also formerly served on the board of the Fort Bend Regional Council on Substance Abuse, whose mission is providing families and individuals the substance abuse prevention, education, and treatment services needed for positive change for themselves and the community. Tate lives in Houston with his husband, Anson, who is a doctor in the Houston Medical Center.