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"Happy the land that has no history." A poignant phrase LDR quotes, particularly as this book was written after Ralph, that wonderful husband of hers, died. Happy the Land is entirely about their, her, and the land's history, and so you would assume this would be an unhappy book (given the title) but it is not. LDR makes sure to offer the same witty, humorous narration she shared in her first book -- just with an added flavor of how life, when we least expect it, changes. If you liked her first book (We Took to the Woods) you will equally like this one....Read more
As a fervent fan of memoirs about returning to the land/roots I am a little ashamed that I only discovered Louise Dickinson Rich's work recently. Even more surprised was I, given her modern voice, when I realized that "We Took to the Woods" was written in the 40's. References to using Model T's to haul logs (sacrilege now) clued me in.
It is sure fun to read about how even back then people wondered how someone could stand living in the backwoods of Maine. Louise answers such questions with a delightful mix of amusing stories, witticisms, and no-nonsense "Well, why not?"s.
I would have liked to have known LDR personally -- she's a hoot. Read all of her works if you can.
I thought I had read the reviews and looked at the picture carefully but somehow I missed that this pedometer does not have a clip. The only way to carry it is in pocket or by the string. So far the pedometer itself works well (the primary feature, of course) but I wish it had the clip feature for ease's sake. Oh well. I bought it as a Groupon purchase or I would consider sending it back....Read more
Did you know that American Sign Language is more akin to French SL than British SL? Or that Martha's Vineyard was home to one of the earliest deaf communities? Fox interweaves the captivating, political history of sign language with a modern researcher's attempt to record a remote Israeli village distinctive SL "dialect". This book is absolutely captivating in its discussion of the evolution of sign language, and linguistics in general....Read more
Sure, many of us have been temporary workers at a restaurant, but have you ever professionally worked as a waiter? In NYC? At Thomas Keller's Per Se?! Phoebe Damrosch shares the trials of working as a waiter full-time in a nerve-wracking, male-centric workplace -- while still loving the job. It is fascinating to read about the knowledge and routines Damrosch had to pick up to be a professional waiter at such an upscale venue, and Thomas Keller fans will especially enjoy the detailed descriptions of the food served at Per Se. Despite still having serving-inspired nightmares to this day, 'Service Included' almost tempts me back into the food industry....Read more
From the moment I laid hands upon this cookbook I thought about who I could give it to (answer: everyone). The Scandinavian Cookbook could be displayed as easily on a living room table as in the kitchen; your eyes will feast upon gallery-worthy photographs of Scandinavia while your stomach growls in anticipation of the cuisine. A particularly lovely twist to the cookbook is that the recipes are organized by calendar month to accentuate seasonal foods and flavors. Rye bread and fish stews in winter, strawberries and pickled cucumbers in summer, and aquavit every day. Kos deg! (Enjoy yourself!)...Read more
Is it possible to celebrate your ancestry without being offensive if your ancestors were Confederates and/or opposed the Civil Rights Movement? What does the Confederate flag represent to you -- Southern Pride or racism? Tony Horwitz ponders such questions as he visits the battlefields of the Civil War and discovers how the "War Between the States" truly hasn't ended for some folks....Read more
It is altogether too easy to forget how perilous commercial fishing is. For most consumers, salmon seems to simply appear at the local grocery. Bill Carter instead reveals to readers the torturous agony wild salmon fishermen (himself included) suffer on and off the deck when they depend on this uncertain resource for their income and lifestyle. As an avid reader of Alaskan travel essays I certainly recommend Red Summer, even though it paints a grimmer portrait of the state and the people that live there than most do. Nevertheless, it is valuable read to refresh ourselves on the notion that people must work and even suffer for the culinary delights we so casually consume....Read more
Karin Muller is all that I want to be and more: strongly independent; multi-lingual; adventurous; documentary filmmaker, writer, and judo maven. Yet by her own words, at age thirty-four she felt lacking in focus. Harmony. Wa. So in typical Mullerfashion she decided to move to Japan for a year in an attempt to discover the spiritual peace and dedicated focus prized by Japanese society. Despite being a bold blonde amongst the dainty and conservative, Muller details her attempt to fit into Japanese society - and manages to reveal the Japan most can only dream of....Read more
"`War," he grumbled. "That's all Vietnam is known for." It's hard to argue with that statement. Most Americans attribute the country with death and devastation but for Dana Sachs, Vietnam is more like paradise. In this personal memoir, Sachs welcomes readers to the bustling streets and gracious people of everyday Hanoi she came to know during her nine years there. Now when I think of Vietnam, I think of this Vietnam....Read more