This is not just your ordinary tale of backpackers seeing the world. The scene is the late 1980's in South East Asia - before Internet, before cell phones, before instant communication around the world. Two budget backpackers (Andrew and Kirsten) are trying to see the world on the cheap - pinching pennies by staying in ratty cockroach infested hostel dorms and quickly running out of money. Then Andrew discovers a money belt full of money and … [Read more...]
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Some but not all of the books reviewed have been sent to us as samples.
Quiet as They Come is a collection of short interlinked stories about families told by author Angie Chau. The stories are based in San Francisco, California and date from the 1980's until the present. This book highlights families torn between two cultures, America and Vietnam; some of the characters are able to adjust to their new life in America - others find it more challenging. After the fall of Saigon in 1975 thousands of Vietnamese … [Read more...]
This is a collection of fictional short stories by creative writer, Ryan O'Neill. The stories are fiction but you wonder how much Ryan draws upon his personal experience in writing these based on all his time lived abroad. He has called Africa, Europe and Asia 'home' before moving to Australia where he now resides. Words are his literary playground and creative outlet. Some of the stories are exercises in linguistic extremes such as "seventeen … [Read more...]
This book is a fast, engaging and at times humorous read - highlighting stories from the author's childhood trips gallivanting with his family around the world. They visit exotic destinations - remote islands in the middle of the South Pacific and fish in Piranha infested waters - always in search of "local" non touristy experiences. The author's father was infected with wanderlust, taking trips without making many plans and always bringing … [Read more...]
Imagine writing a book when your body is entirely paralyzed except for your left eye lid - the other eye being stitched shut. Author Bauby wrote this entire book by blinking - using a special alphabet that was devised for him - he chose each letter, one at a time slowly forming words, then sentences. Rendered almost entirely rigid by a stroke at age 43 in 1995, he left a world of fashion (he was editor of the French Elle) and entered a … [Read more...]
Life certainly takes a winding road sometimes - Kurt Koontz was a successful sales executive for a Fortune 500 company. "Retiring" fairly early he is now a newly minted author and gives lectures and presentations on his life lessons learned. The name of his book, A Million Steps" reflects the amount of steps he estimated he took over nearly 30 days hiking the famous Santiago Compestela route - all 490 miles of it. This book is not merely a … [Read more...]
Fourteen unique stories make up this collection, weaving characters together who are not linked to each other personally, but rather are tied together by virtue of being torn between cultures, not quite fitting in - trying to find their balance and "place" in society. All of these stories have some connection to or relate to Asia. Author Erker is a versatile writer with an international perspective; he spent his formative years growing up in … [Read more...]
Vignettes & Postcards, edited by Erin Byrne and Anna Pook This collection of short stories comes from "The Evening Writing Workshop at Shakespeare and Company Bookstore" in Paris - held in the Fall of 2011. These stories are masterfully told - each an intriguing "painting" if you will. Paris is certainly an ideal location for a writing workshop - scores of accomplished writers have called the city home at some point in their careers, … [Read more...]
No one should have to go through what author Tré Miller Rodríguez went through at her age. At 34, she tragically loses her husband to a heart attack while he is in bed next to her. This true story is her detailed, raw and brutally honest look at how she tries to cope with the grief of his loss in the months afterwards - it hurts, it is not always pretty but it is how she makes do. Tré has already lived enough tragedy for one life. She has … [Read more...]
This book should be required reading for anyone who fly's regularly, those who occasionally take to the skies and for those even thinking about flying. In short - everyone! Captain Smith tackles common misconceptions both about flying and highlights the behind the scenes of those who work in the industry. At times humorous, at times serious - this is an exceptional and rare look into the inner workings of this global industry. Good places to … [Read more...]