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Maya Roads: One Woman's Journey Among the People of the Rainforest Paperback – August 1, 2011
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"Brilliant. Maya Roads takes the reader on an intense journey deep into tropical forest landscapes, described so eloquently one can feel the sweaty climate, see the birds wrapped in the indigenous women’s braids, and experience the stress as witnesses and survivors recount stories of repression and resistance. [It] combines the prose of a skilled journalist with the in-depth knowledge of a long time observer of the Maya peoples." Amy Ross, associate professor, Department of Geography, University of Georgia
About the Author
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"A book for anyone who cares about the impact of war and the power of human relationships." - Lindsey Hilsum, award-winning television reporter, author of Sandstorm: Libya in the Time of Revolution
"Lush...captures the bloody violence swirling in the midst of beauty--an extraordinary piece of historical reportage." - June Carolyn Erlick, author of Disappeared, A Journalist Silenced, and editor-in-chief of ReVista, the Harvard Review of Latin America
2015 Silver medal Global Ebook Awards for Autobiography/Memoir
Maya Roads literary awards: Grand Award, Society of American Travel Writers. International Book Awards 2013: Winner, Autobiography/Memoir, Best New Nonfiction, Best Travel Essay Book. Independent Publishers' Award 2013 Gold -- Best Travel Essay Book. National Geographic Traveler Book of the Month. Best Creative Nonfiction Book of the Year, Northern California Book Awards. For Maya Roads and other travel writing, McConahay has been named Lowell Thomas Travel Journalist of the Year, the equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize in the genre.
"Mary Jo McConahay is to travel what M.F.K. Fisher is to food -- she goes deep."- Sonoma Magazine. Visit Maya Roads at www.mayaroads.com
The rainforest of southern Mexico and northern Guatemala -- I traveled it for years as a journalist but also because I am deeply taken by all culture Maya, ancient and modern. I believe in "deep travel;" Maya Roads does not avoid the violence that has ripped that part of the world with revolution and civil war -- I describe what I have seen. But I travel too in order to find the sacred Maya sites, to meet memorable people I would meet no other way, and to wonder at the ancient cities that speak even in ruins.
Praise for Maya Roads: "From the moment Mary Jo McConahay steps into the deep Mexican jungle, you will follow her anywhere. In this extraordinary travel memoir, McConahay journeys through beauty, history, disappearing cultures, and revolution. . . . Her courage, keen observation, and open heart make her an unparalleled guide to this gorgeous, mysterious, sacred, and sometimes terrifying corner of the planet." --Laura Fraser, author, An Italian Affair and All Over the Map
"Her own progress--from wide-eyed newcomer, wary of spiders and snakes, to world-experienced journalist familiar with the unblinking look of death--makes her the best sort of guide. She is innocence and experience; discoverer and knowing witness. The Maya believe we are nearing an end time; I cannot imagine a better chronicler of this time and place than McConahay." --Richard Rodriguez, PBS NewsHour, and author, Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez and Brown: The Last Discovery of America
"A superb book, written with a reporter's sharp eye and the heart of witness." Stephen Kinzer, author of All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror and Overthrow: America's Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq
Here is the book's own site: www.mayaroads.com
Read "On the Macal," a Solas Travel Writing Award winner (category: "Love," my story appearing in Best Women's Travel Writing 2012. "It's the Sauce," another Solas prize-winner -- Gold in "Travel and Food" -- appears in the Traveler's Tales anthology, Best Travel Writing 2011. "Sauce" is about about strange food, unconventional travel and -- you decide -- maybe a kind of love.
Top Customer Reviews
she was mesmerizing. I bought the book and I'm reading it and I see why I felt
swept along. She writes about war, Maya temples, archaeological sites, hidden lakes
and animals, all in the same flowing and fascinating voice, honest and really curious
about whatever she sees. She is very knowledgeable. It feels like I'm with her in
these experiences and I wish the trip could be longer. I'll probably get this book for
a couple of friends.
Reading this travel memoir allowed me to enter strange places where I might not have the courage to go; it helped me to understand the politics that have made life so precarious for the Maya; it made me aware of the great beauty of creation. Pity and terror--that's what the ancients thought made for tragedy. There's plenty of both in this book. In these alluring and forbidding Maya Roads, McConahay is a trustworthy guide. And the book is "a page turner" to boot.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The author takes you to the Mayan jungle – the scents, the sounds, the people, their culture, all richly described. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Harry
I read this book while I was In Guatemala working in Maya villages. It gave me much more insight into their lives and paths. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Amazon Customer
I found this book impossible to get through, I just kept putting it down. It did not have a cohesive story, and read like a textbook. Read morePublished on January 8, 2014 by K Davis
I got to know Mary Jo McConahay while in Guatemala for the Rios Montt trial for genocide and crimes against humanity. Read morePublished on June 27, 2013 by Paul Roberts
This was a fascinating read on the Mayan culture and how it has changed over time. It shows how our humanness can transcend all barriers of language, traditions, and preconceived... Read morePublished on November 16, 2012 by Jessica N. Holland
Who are Lacandón Maya Indians? They honor sacbe ("the White Road") The Milky Way. How do the lives of these women, men and children in Mexico and Guatemala connect with... Read morePublished on September 19, 2012 by Teresa LeYung-Ryan
I became aware of this book when it was reviewed in the Tulsa Library monthly periodical. The review intrigued me as the book covered both cultural and political changes in the... Read morePublished on September 16, 2012 by Cheryl H.
I loved this book for many reasons. The beautiful story telling of her experiences by the author, her relationships with the countries she visits, its' land, the people and most... Read morePublished on September 12, 2012 by Catalina Marin
A very good read while traveling in the Mayan areas. Gives some insight into the politics of Guatemala and makes one want to learn more. Read morePublished on February 29, 2012 by Randi