The guerillas had captured this young missionary in the jungles of Colombia. Russell’s response and faith will inspire young readers in their own walk with the Lord, while real life adventure and humorous missteps will keep them glued to the pages.
· * Young Russell’s prayer asking God to call his parents to be missionaries.
· * God’s answer when Russell was eight and his donation to his mother’s schooling.
· * A near disaster involving a pig in an airplane and donkeys on the runway.
· * His capture and confinement to a guerilla camp in the jungle.
· * Russell’s decision to rescue his captors by being a good example and loving them.
· * His release from, and return to, his enemies to continue the ministry he had begun.
Russell Stendal, a former hostage of Colombian rebels, is a lifelong missionary to that same group in the jungles of Colombia. He is an influential friend to military and government leaders in Colombia, Cuba, Mexico, Venezuela, and the United States. Russell’s ministry shares the gospel via twelve radio stations, hundreds of thousands of Bibles, books, and movies distributed through airplane parachute drops, and numerous speaking engagements for groups of leaders, prisoners, and individuals. Russell goes wherever the Lord leads, whether it’s to speak with a president or to go deep into the jungle to help an individual in trouble. He has witnessed thousands commit their lives to Christ.
And, at the centre of it all, trying desperately to work it all out, is the real David.
How to Be Happy tackles depression, friendship, sexual identity, suicide, academic pressure, love and adolescent confusion. It’s a brave and honest account of one young man’s search for a happy, true and meaningful life that will resonate with readers young and old.
David Burton is a twenty-seven-year-old writer from Brisbane, best known for his theatre work. His play April's Fool (Playlab Press) toured nationally in 2012. He has recently co-written Hedonism's Second Album for La Boite indie, and The Landmine Is Me for Queensland Theatre Company. A speaker and presenter in school across Queensland, David is passionate about sharing his remarkable story with young people. How to Be Happy won the Text Prize for Young Adult and Children's Writing in 2014.
‘[Burton] delivers some devastating truth bombs. Sexuality is hard. Identity is hard. Love is hard. School is hard...This book shines a much-needed light back through the tunnel. It is a call-out to teenagers still struggling to find their way. How to Be Happy says “here’s the path I took, hope it helps”.’ Books & Publishing
‘I’m blown away by Burton’s raw honesty and admirable wit.’ Alpha Reader
‘A fast-paced read that reminded me of one of my favourite memoirs, I thoroughly enjoyed this book.’ Bumbling Bookworm
‘How to Be Happy is easily a five star book ...I just can’t fathom my love for this book into words. You all need to read it.’ Endless Pages
‘How to Be Happy is funny. Bitingly, embarrassingly, genuinely—FUNNY...This book is gold, and if I could I’d make it mandatory reading in schools.’ Alpha Reader
‘This is an important book, one that deserves our attention... Highly recommended.’ Reading Time
‘Anyone who has ever felt like they didn’t fit in will be able to relate to the story of David’s unusual childhood and teenage years. I wish there had been a book like this when I was 14.’ Get Reading
‘How to Be Happy is a perfect books for teens and adults...It's funny, touching, and insightful, and I think it could help a lot of people feel less isolated.’ Bookish Manicurist
‘Burton’s descriptions of his anxiety and depression are tangibly poignant, giving authentic voice to those struggling with similar issues. His tone morphs fluidly from compulsively funny to devastating from one moment to the next, and his uproarious wit shines throughout. A heartfelt, accessible book that strives to break down the stigmas surrounding mental illness with remarkable humor and honesty.’ Kirkus Reviews
Now, for the very first time, Alfie talks about how it all began...From growing up on the sunny south coast of England, having fun with friends and thinking up pranks, dares, and silly activities throughout the long summer holidays in Brighton, through to recording his first ever vlog at the age of 15, The Scrapbook of My Life is the story of how a young, ambitious kid with a big character took the world by storm.
But The Scrapbook of My Life isn't a typical autobiography. Join Alfie as he recalls his first childhood memories, his first day at school, his first ever job, and how he has moved from his hometown to the wide-eyed metropolis of London--and fill in your own pages alongside your favorite YouTube star! With alternate pages for readers to complete, including pages for sticking photographs, completing stats and facts, and collecting souvenirs, The Scrapbook of My Life is the ultimate journal for PointlessBlog fans, old and new!