In the Sanctuary of Outcasts was basically two stories, one I liked and one, not so much. Unfortunately, the less interesting and occasionally even annoying one dominated the book.
Story one: Neil White’s explanation for his jail sentence (bank fraud in the form of check kiting) and his subsequent journey to make things right. Lots of history about his family, his various business ventures, his wife and kids, blah blah. The thing is, other than an 18 month prison sentence, White is kind of a dull guy and not a terribly good writer (not awful, just not outstanding).
The interesting thing about White is part two of the story: he serves out his prison sentence in a freaking leper colony. Some of the people in this colony were forced there over sixty years ago, either by family members or the government. Many fell in love, but were torn away from their children or spouses. Their families often disowned them. I’m sure they had some fascinating stories to tell, but instead White focuses on his own journey to righteousness by finding inspiration in the patients’ struggles, while mostly neglecting to really enlighten the reader.
An interesting premise and so much potential, but it really fell flat. If it had been a biography of the main patient he befriended, a woman named Ella, I think it would have been a much more interesting book to read.