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RUNNING AWAY TO HOME Paperback – October 2, 2012
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“Wilson's memoir isn't so much about assimilating to Croatian culture as it is about finding family and, therefore, acceptance in unlikely places. A fun-filled, revealing peek into the Croatian countryside nevertheless, it will be enjoyed by travelogue lovers and admirers of Peter Mayle's A Year in Provence (1989) and Frances Maye's Under the Tuscan Sun (1996).” ―Katharine Frank, Booklist
“This thoughtful, amusing tale reads like a novel and will have wide appeal.” ―Melissa Stearns, Franklin Pierce Univ. Lib., Rindge, NH, Library Journal
“The author's voice is consistently infused with an energetic spunkiness, complimented with passages of sage introspection…[an] appealing travelogue of discovery and renewal.” ―Kirkus Book Reviews
“In her funny and heartfelt memoir, she packs up her husband and two young children from Des Moines, Iowa, with the plan to live a simpler, more connected life in the ancestral home in Croatia and to learn about her immigrant story.” ―Publisher's Weekly
“Running Away to Home is a sweet journey of reconnection. Wilson and her family move from Big Box America to her ancestral home in Croatia, and in the process become that most precious of things, the truly connected family.” ―Janine Latus, New York Times bestselling author of If I Am Missing or Dead: A Sister's Story of Love, Murder, and Liberation
“Jennifer Wilson travels and writes with heart and pluck. With her husband and kids in tow, she pushes past all her comfort zone and shows us that adventure is a worthy and rewarding family pursuit. Filled with memorable characters and lovely epiphanies, her tale inspires us to rethink how we define `family' and `home.'” ―Jeannie Ralston, author of The Unlikely Lavender Queen: A Memoir of Unexpected Blossoming
“I like the heart and good humor of Jennifer Wilson: she has given us a book about the ways sense of place is heightened by displacement and the most enlightening scraps of history must be coaxed from the darkest corners.” ―Michael Perry, author of Population: 485: Meeting Your Neighbors One Siren at a Time
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Senator Steve Komadina
We have traveled in the region and can attest to its' beauty and wonderful people. But, like any people, you need meet them where they are, not where you want them to be. You are a guest in their home, and they are not Disney characters that present you with a crafted (un)reality. Jim and Jennifer had decidely different experiences. She resented how easily her husband became "one of the guys." He met the villagers seemingly without preconceived notions, and so fit in with the villagers with little difficulty. Jennifer, on the other hand, dealt with self-imposed boundaries. She was searching for answers to inner questions, and had much more difficulty. Her story is one of breaking through.
The book is not a travel book, but a story of an internal journey. It is more of a search for inner understanding that, to me, makes it so much more real. Life doesn't present simple answers to the big questions. As in all good books, it leaves you wishing for that satisfying finale. Life resists being tied up with a nice bow, and so does Running Away to Home.