Thelma Reese and BJ Kittredge team up with notable results on the book How Seniors Are Saving the World: Retirement Activism to the Rescue! The book, running just a little over two hundred pages, makes a strong case for why we should appreciate seniors for their continued vitality rather than consign them to mothballs as is so often our wont as a modern society. Reese and Kittredge, to their credit, don’t make their claim based off an assortment of well established tropes. They take a different approach instead and build their point of view on the backs of a group of individuals who have obviously transformed their age from being a liability into an advantage. 


It’s an approach that pays off well. The calm and collected examinations of each subject are never clinical but instead informed by confident yet conversational prose that manages to couple the best of both worlds, characterization and research, under one tent. Reese and Kittredge do an exceptional job constructing the individual profiles in such a way that each person lives for the reader rather than coming across as some sort of case study. In the hands of a lesser writer, these profiles would have come across as something much different and lesser than what we have in this book. 

The authors group the profiles according to theme over the course of nine parts or “chapters”. It is clear that Reese and Kittredge group these profiles with a great deal of consideration rather than inserting them willy nilly into the text and the book, therefore, unfolds in a lucid and intelligent way. The co-authors marry the details of individual lives with the right amount of research and the mix of information and personal examination makes for compelling reading. 

A big reason why it makes for such compelling reading is the polished efficiency of the writing. Reese and Kittredge work together in seamless fashion from the “interview” beginning the book through its conclusion. Some, however, will quibble with the book title’s seeming puffery verses quantifiable reality. While some, particularly of that age group, may hail the continued energy of seniors as a victory of sorts for all humankind. Others will justifiably view this work as something Reese and Kittredge tailor to a particular niche and overblowing the efforts of an age group who make micro changes meaningful to their world into societal changes capable of resonating on a much greater scale. 


There isn’t anything out of place over the course of How Seniors Are Saving the World: Retirement Activism to the Rescue! It isn’t a comprehensive work, but Thelma Reese and BJ Kittredge do an exemplary job of encompassing a potentially enormous subject into a surprisingly small frame. Reese’s experience as a writer is key to bringing that off and, ultimately, making How Seniors Are Saving the World: Retirement Activism to the Rescue! one of the best non-fictional reading experiences in recent memory. Let’s hope these authors continue to work together on further works in the near future.

Garth Thomas