So much wisdom to be gleaned from this classic! I have skimmed this before, during a very busy time in my life years ago and missed what an incredibleSo much wisdom to be gleaned from this classic! I have skimmed this before, during a very busy time in my life years ago and missed what an incredible book this is. It took me almost twice as long to get through because I was constantly stopping and taking notes on various passages. While there are certainly portions that date this book to its post Civil War time period, those simply bring historical insight to that specific time period while the entire book is FILLED with gentle, practical wisdom that is as relevant today as it was a hundred years ago. ...more
Recommended by my personal trainer. I was very hesitant and NOT interested in another "fad" diet. However, after reading through and studying, I realiRecommended by my personal trainer. I was very hesitant and NOT interested in another "fad" diet. However, after reading through and studying, I realize that this information is confirmed by all the nutrition/medical studies I've been reading over the past few years. This was recommended to me as a better "intro" to the Zone system than the original book. This isn't a "fad" diet, but pretty solid nutritional advice focusing on keeping your dietary intake hormonally balanced in order to reduce inflammation which recent studies have shown to be a root cause in so many of our current degenerative diseases. It isn't fancy, or the slickest with lots of bells and whistles but it's doing the job with both me and my husband. Slow and steady wins the race. As an addendum, I just checked out Sears most recent Mediterranean Zone book which is essentially a recent update to his 20-yr-old original Zone. If I were going to pick just one, I would go with the Mediterranean. It has the most recent dietary research which was not yet available when this and the original were first written. ...more
An enjoyable read for the serious foodie or those considering becoming a chef. The culinary details of the CIA's master chef certification test wouldAn enjoyable read for the serious foodie or those considering becoming a chef. The culinary details of the CIA's master chef certification test would frustrate and have vexed even the most serious cooks, so while I found the entire book enlightening, I can't imagine people that aren't seriously in to food philosophies and techniques would be that interested. If, you are interested in the daily culinary lives of great, talented chefs, this could be for you. ...more
As the title states, different survivors from all over the world tell their stories. Told in very short snippets it made this difficult subject easierAs the title states, different survivors from all over the world tell their stories. Told in very short snippets it made this difficult subject easier for me to handle. The atrocities of the Holocaust must never be forgotten and as one survivor said, "If we could live it, you should be able to watch or listen to our stories." I listened to the audio version which was very well narrated. As much as I've read and researched WWII, I learned several new things and anyone could benefit from the new perspective this brought, if only to reiterate that several of the stories were not isolated incidents. Highly recommended....more
Trevor Noah sharing his insightful story of growing up in South Africa under the Apartheid regime as a mixed race child grabbed me from the very beginTrevor Noah sharing his insightful story of growing up in South Africa under the Apartheid regime as a mixed race child grabbed me from the very beginning. His fierce love for his amazingly strong black mother and her determination to raise him in a country where she could be arrested for having a relationship with his white Swiss father is inspiring. Incredible struggles that would turn many into an eternal victim were faced with dignity and determination. This story could have turned into a bitter indictment of racism, poverty and crooked politics but it wasn’t at all. Racism, poverty and crooked politics were simply the background and setting for a laugh-out-loud at times, engaging and thoroughly enjoyable memoir. Some of the stories were shocking in their cruelty and skewed prejudice but Noah’s mother’s refusal to feel sorry for their situation and his ability to laugh at absurdity, refuse to play the victim and move on are lessons from which we could all learn.
Noah’s narration of his own story was perfect. He’s had practice as a DJ, a radio personality and most recently a television persona making him the perfect narrator for his own story. He doesn’t sound like a book narrator because his speaking, along with the writing style, is very relaxed which makes listening to the audio feel more like a casual sit-down chat.
I had never heard of Trevor Noah before finding this memoir. Reading a synopsis grabbed my attention then a special deal from Audible sealed the deal. Very enjoyable, enlightening and highly recommended! ...more
I thoroughly enjoyed this engaging historical fiction which takes place in 16th century Rajasthan, a culture in a time period with which I have no famI thoroughly enjoyed this engaging historical fiction which takes place in 16th century Rajasthan, a culture in a time period with which I have no familiarity so the author’s ability to comfortably set me in the middle of a desert village in 1554 was commendable. I listened to the audio version, expertly narrated by Meetu Chilana which, I believe, added to my enjoyment of the story. Hearing a native speaker 1) pronounce the foreign names and places and 2) create a non-english Indian language rhythm with an english narration was very engaging.
Through the story we follow the life of Adhira as her very birth, taking place during a rain in the middle of a drought, becomes a sign of blessing. Through her eyes as the beloved youngest child, we experience her world near the fortress city of Jaisalmer during the time of the Moghal Emperor Akbar whose armies are sweeping through India. Here again we have the clash of religion and cultures; Islam vs. Hindu without the gory details.
Much of young Adhira’s family life centers on the Hindu temple as we learn about the duties, life and expectations of devadasis, temple dancers. It becomes apparent that, even as a very young child, she has a natural gift of rhythm and dance. As the temple dance master, her father’s regular presence at the temple allows Adhira to learn the storied dances of Krishna at an early age. She feels called to temple life, not knowing the “dark” side of the devadasi duties and too young to understand the sacrifices the life requires. As a life-long dancer, learning about this dance form was fascinating for me and has prompted additional research and study. As a reader, I was carried along with the tales and could hear the clinking of the bells and musical descriptions that could have, in the hands of a less skilled author, become too involved for westerners like me, who are unfamiliar with these stories. However, the author adeptly relayed the nature of the dance and storyline without making it tedious.
This is an excellent example of why I enjoy historical fiction. Learning about a foreign culture and time period, not through lectures, but through well-researched story telling that makes the reader emotionally involved in the lives of the characters is intensely rewarding. Duva does an expert job of drawing the reader/listener into the world of the devadasis, the Hindu temple dancers. Everything from their colorful costumes, jewelry and dance rhythms to their required commitment to “patrons” for financial support comes to light.
I found the story engaging, the characters well developed and the setting, which was so foreign to what I know, well played. I cared about what happened to these characters and enjoyed the interactions between them. Even now, several weeks after finishing the book, as I read the names of the various characters, I smile with remembrance, as if they are old friends which indeed they became to me. This was a truly engaging reading experience, highly recommended for anyone interested in historical or literary fiction.
The author graciously provided me a copy of this audiobook for review which in no way influenced my opinions of this wonderful debut novel. I look forward to her next work....more