I must admit, if I think about it for a second, this is probably the moment I’ve been waiting for since I first committed to writing Dancing Gabe: One Step At A Time. It feels a little surreal. The first review.
You see, yesterday morning, Dancing Gabe, his brother Mike, and me were guests on the Ace Burpee Show, a popular Virgin Radio program in Winnipeg. It was a great way to start our day, and we gave Ace his own copy of the book. Little did I know that Ace would finish the show and proceed to devour all 304 pages of the book before the sun rose on his next morning’s show. Did you sleep, Ace?
And this morning, Ace posted his review of the book. The first review of Dancing Gabe: One Step At A Time. Thank you, Ace!
The Dancing Gabe book is fantastic.
Posted on September 9, 2015 by Ace Burpee
I thought I knew quite a bit about Dancing Gabe.
I knew that he shows up at every single game I’ve been to and dances. I knew that he has an amazing memory. (The very first time I ever met him he connected my last name to both my sister and my father and asked how they were doing by name. “How is your sister Susie and your Dad Al?”, he asked. He had worked with them both briefly, very briefly, at the St. Vital Y. Amazing.) I knew that he delivers hand written Christmas cards every year. I see him and talk to him often, but I guess that’s all I really knew. Not much more than anyone else.
Dancing Gabe: One Step at a Time, the book, is his entire story. And. It. Is. Fascinating. The life of Gabriel Langlois before becoming Dancing Gabe is extraordinary. I will give away as little as possible based on the assumption that you intend to read the book (Side note: I love reading book reviews and can never figure out how they can include so much info and make me want to read it so badly without giving me so much info that I don’t feel the need to read it. I doubt I could review books for a living. I’d be the worst. As you can see.)
From his home, to institutions, to foster homes, and back again. From not speaking a word before the age of 10 to graduating high school. From being lost in the cold to being rescued by a never-to- be-found stranger. From being bullied to having people care deeply about his progress and success… the book is awesome. Author Daniel Perron did a fantastic job. You’ll fall in love with his family, with those who looked out for Gabe and helped him along the way, and gain a new appreciation for Gabe himself. It will absolutely be worth your while.
The era in which Gabe grew up was different, and if you are uncomfortable reading the word “retard” repeatedly, be warned. How certain people and situations were handled not so long ago has changed greatly, but good people who want the best for others were always around, and they factor greatly in the Dancing Gabe story. Great, great read. I will treasure my signed copy, in which Gabe wrote in his signature beautiful cursive “NJoy my x-cellent, Gr8 story. Thax 4 being a good friend”. Thanks for being yourself, Gabe. You’re the best.