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Archive for the ‘Book Review’ Category

Interviews and Reviews

In connection with the review of Travels in Ghana, I was recently interviewed on a book reviewer’s website. Syria Says is a newly-launched website featuring indie author book reviews. The review is on the home page and also appears on the Amazon page. The interview appears on this page.

Juniper Grove, another book reviewer site, recently posted a very nice review, also. That review can be seen here.

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I’ve recently taken advantage of the popularity of e-books and massaged my Travels in Ghana website into one. The blog will remain, as it’s the best place to host so many photos. But an e-book is a much friendlier format for new readers than having to page through 117 posts on the web.

This would have been unthinkable a few years ago. Now it’s not only possible, it’s easy and doesn’t cost anything other than your time. I’ve added new material that has never appeared on the website.

Travels in Ghana is a travelogue of a road trip in 2009. From Accra to the painted village of Sirigu, the people, the adventures and the sights are described. There are insights and explanations of Ghanaian customs, culture, cuisine and daily life. Among the places visited are the slave castle at Elmina, the stilt village of Nzulezu, Mole National Park, Sirigu and an unexpected find at Bolgatanga.

Travels in Ghana is currently available for $2.99 on Smashwords and is also available on Amazon US and Amazon UK.

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This is a memoir recounting an English couple’s post retirement move to a village in Spain. Victoria, tired of the cold and rain in the UK, convinces husband Joe to move to Spain. Joe agrees, on condition that the move is for five years only. At the end of that time, they would reassess and decide if they will stay permanently.

Thus we are introduced to a delightful cast of characters, including a lucky meeting with a British expat and her mother, who soon become the couple’s good friends. There are minor mishaps and missteps along the way, some of which are pretty funny, as the couple struggles to learn Spanish and local customs.

The story is engaging and beautifully drawn in a very down-to-earth, refreshing style. This is exactly the kind of tale that captivates me and feeds my interest both in travel and cross cultural issues. I read it in one greedy gulp over two days and hated to see it end. The good news is that the author is planning a sequel!

The one thing I found a bit jarring was the insertion of recipes at the end of nearly every chapter. They were always something that had been eaten during the course of the story, but without a lead-in of any kind and my extreme lack of interest in cooking, I felt they unnecessarily interrupted the flow of the story. If the author had provided a bit of a backstory on her interest in cuisine, it would have made a better tie-in. Better still if the recipes were all put at the end of the book.

A paperback edition is for sale at Amazon, and e-book versions are available both at Amazon and Smashwords. I bought the Smashwords edition.  It would have been nice to have a book cover image at the beginning of the e-book. Other than that, there were no formatting issues.

A great read, highly recommended.

Rating:  4.5 out of 5 stars.

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