by Susan Boyle,
Atria Books, 2010
I remember seeing Susan Boyle's first audition on Britain's Got Talent, then showing it to my son when he got home from school. When she opened her mouth, he said, "That's not her singing, is it?" He thought it was a trick. No one expected that voice to come from that visual. But God truly uses the humble things of this world to shame the proud, and He gave Susan a beautiful talent.
Susan tells her own story in The Woman I Was Born to Be. After a brief prologue, she begins with the story of her birth in Bangour Hospital, Scotland. It's ironic that she was born on April 1st, considering how everyone was fooled by first appearances. God's sense of humour, perhaps, knowing what was to come? Doctors told Susan's parents from the start that since she'd been deprived of oxygen, they wouldn't be able to expect much of her, and this early determination coloured much of her life afterwards. School was a struggle, though Susan persisted; relationships were challenging. She was somewhat spoiled by her mother and one sister, but the love of her family was a blessing, and Susan enjoyed a very special connection with both of them.
Raised in the Catholic faith, Susan draws much strength and comfort from her religion, and gives thanks to God and "Our Lady" for all good things that have come her way. She is down-to-earth despite her new-found fame, and seems like she would be great fun to have as a dinner guest (you might just want to save the beans for another meal).
This is a non-traditional celebrity bio - you won't find any drinking, drugs, or wild sex here. Susan has lived a life of few regrets, but her story is fascinating nonetheless.