Title: A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard
Author: Eamon Wood
Genre: Memoir, Motivational
A paraplegic since the age of four, Eamon found ways to give his wheelchair wings. He became the number one seed in the Kiwi men’s wheelchair tennis rankings, and represented his country on the men’s wheelchair basketball team, travelling the world. But that was in a safe, predictable team setting. He wanted more.
At twenty-eight, he set off on an epic journey, with little more than his backpack, his guitar, and an open mind. He hitchhiked around New Zealand’s southern island. The travelling bug took him to the UK and the USA, then along the fjords and lakes of Europe.
He slept rough, did odd jobs, busked in thoroughfares and made friends with oddballs. He wheeled his way through cities and small towns, searching... and found himself.
Join the Wayward Wheeler on his epic adventure, detailed with sincerity and humour in A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard.
2020 was a tough year for most everyone on the planet. What people need is a positive attitude adjustment. A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard will be a great place to start. Eamon's attitude is 24k gold! Faced with a challenge due to an injury out of his control when a youth, he chose to treat it as an opportunity. Being put into a wheelchair didn't take life away from him, it created him a chance to live life. If any time you feel the world has gotten you down, read A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard.
Page after page in A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard, it strikes the reader that Eamon has the right idea. I often gasped at the bravery of his tact - jump on a train to see where it goes. As one who plans most of his life, this concept is not in my milieu, but I appreciate those who can do it.
There are incredible life lessons in A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard. They come simply as Eamon is travelling the world. The book is just a fun read. The epilogue even made me smile as Eamon got 2020 right too. Just a great read I would recommend to anyone. If you have missed travelling in the last year, read A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard. If you want to read about the triumph of the human spirit, read this book. If you want to enjoy a truly well-written book, read A Backpack, A Chair and A Beard.
My Rating: 5+ stars
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Born in Nelson, Wood has been in a wheelchair since the age of four-and-a-half, when a car accident left him with permanent damage to his lower spinal cord.
Now 31, he’s spent a lifetime pushing himself to his physical and mental limits; representing New Zealand in wheelchair tennis and basketball, and becoming the first person in a chair to complete an apprenticeship in engineering, helping, as he says, to “deconstruct a few roadblocks for people using wheelchairs who want to become fabricators”.
In December 2016 Eamon embarked on a worldwide journey about which he said:
‘I’m just a guy in a chair, travelling around the world. Expanding my culture, learning about myself and other people. I want to inspire other people, not just people that are disabled. Inspire them to do what they want to do. Follow me on my own journey for beauty and growth.’
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Reviewed by: Mr. N