The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio by Terry Ryan is a true story of a mother of 10, Evelyn Ryan, who works to keep her family afloat by winning various product contests. Throughout the 50s and 60s, companies like Paper-Mate or Dr. Pepper would ask consumers to finish a rhyme or describe in 25 words or less why their product was the best. Evelyn had a knack for words and her winnings showed it. This story weaves through the Father's alcohol problem, older brothers making it to the minor leagues, and the family cat raising a hen and a sparrow. And that is just the beginning. It's a tale of strength and humor, patience and fulfillment, positive thinking and reward. Three important things I gleaned from the book:
- Don't ever judge others.
- Don't waste your life being bogged down by what others have done to you. Rise above it and live your life free of their's.
- Positive thinking and a sense of humor do wonders.
If that's not a recipe for happy living, I don't know what is.