Jamie Zeppa was 24 when she left a stagnant life at home and signed a contract to teach for two years in the Buddhist hermit kingdom of Bhutan. Much more than just a travel memoir, Beyond the Sky and the Earth is the story of her time in a Himalayan village, immersed in Bhutanese culture and the wonders of new and lasting love. Whether you're travelling to Bhutan, looking for the best travel writing around, or wishing to be transported to a culture, mindset, and spiritual ethos wonderfully different from your own, Beyond the Sky and the Earth is a joyous and lush memoir that will transform the way you think of faith, Western life, and love.
A masterful work of personal reportage, this volume is also a vibrant portrait of a mysterious people and an essential document of a disappearing culture.Fabled, feared, romanticized, and reviled, the Gypsies--or Roma--are among the least understood people on earth. Their culture remains largely obscure, but in Isabel Fonseca they have found an eloquent witness. In Bury Me Standing, alongside unforgettable portraits of individuals--the poet, the politician, the child prostitute--Fonseca offers sharp insights into the humor, language, wisdom, and taboos of the Roma. She traces their exodus out of India 1,000 years ago and their astonishing history of persecution: enslaved by the princes of medieval Romania; massacred by the Nazis; forcibly assimilated by the communist regimes; evicted from their settlements in Eastern Europe, and most recently, in Western Europe as well. Whether as handy scapegoats or figments of the romantic imagination, the Gypsies have always been with us--but never before have they been brought so vividly to life. Includes fifty black and white photos.
Featuring an all-new cover, New York Times bestseller Bill Bryson's irrevent and hilarious journey through the beloved island nation he called home for two decades. From Downing Street to Loch Ness, this is a delightful look at the United Kingdom.
Before New York Times bestselling author Bill Bryson wrote The Road to Little Dribbling, he took this delightfully irreverent jaunt around the unparalleled floating nation of Great Britain, which has produced zebra crossings, Shakespeare, Twiggie Winkie's Farm, and places with names like Farleigh Wallop and Titsey.
A New York Times Notable Book of the YearWinner of the Mountains and Plains Book Seller's Association Award "Sprawling in scope. . . . Mr. Egan uses the past powerfully to explain and give dimension to the present." --The New York Times "Fine reportage . . . honed and polished until it reads more like literature than journalism." --Los Angeles Times "They have tried to tame it, shave it, fence it, cut it, dam it, drain it, nuke it, poison it, pave it, and subdivide it," writes Timothy Egan of the West; still, "this region's hold on the American character has never seemed stronger." In this colorful and revealing journey through the eleven states west of the 100th meridian, Egan, a third-generation westerner, evokes a lovely and troubled country where land is religion and the holy war between preservers and possessors never ends. Egan leads us on an unconventional, freewheeling tour: from America's oldest continuously inhabited community, the Ancoma Pueblo in New Mexico, to the high kitsch of Lake Havasu City, Arizona, where London Bridge has been painstakingly rebuilt stone by stone; from the fragile beauty of Idaho's Bitterroot Range to the gross excess of Las Vegas, a city built as though in defiance of its arid environment. In a unique blend of travel writing, historical reflection, and passionate polemic, Egan has produced a moving study of the West: how it became what it is, and where it is going. "The writing is simply wonderful. From the opening paragraph, Egan seduces the reader. . . . Entertaining, thought provoking."
--The Arizona Daily Star Weekly "A western breeziness and love of open spaces shines through Lasso the Wind. . . . The writing is simple and evocative."
Author of Balkan Ghosts, Robert D. Kaplan now travels from West Africa to Southeast Asia to report on a world of disintegrating nation-states, warring nationalities, metastasizing populations, and dwindling resources. He emerges with a gritty tour de force of travel writing and political journalism. Whether he is walking through a shantytown in the Ivory Coast or a death camp in Cambodia, talking with refugees, border guards, or Iranian revolutionaries, Kaplan travels under the most arduous conditions and purveys the most startling truths. Intimate and intrepid, erudite and visceral, The Ends of the Earth is an unflinching look at the places and peoples that will make tomorrow's headlines--and the history of the next millennium."Kaplan is an American master of...travel writing from hell...Pertinent and compelling."--New York Times Book Review "An impressive work. Most travel books seem trivial beside it."--Washington Post Book World
Once upon a time, an Indian writer named Amitav Ghosh set out as an Indian slave, name unknown, who some seven hundred years before had traveled to the Middle East. The journey took him to a small village in Egypt, where medieval customs coexist with twentieth-century desires and discontents. But even as Ghosh sought to re-create the life of his Indian predecessor, he found himself immersed in those of his modern Egyptian neighbors.Combining shrewd observations with painstaking historical research, Ghosh serves up skeptics and holy men, merchants and sorcerers. Some of these figures are real, some only imagine, but all emerge as vividly as the characters in a great novel. In an Antique Land is an inspired work that transcends genres as deftly as it does eras, weaving an entrancing and intoxicating spell.
The spirit of adventure sweeps through the chapters of this exciting volume as we encounter the inspiring, sometimes tragic, often humorous tales of adventurous women -- from the 18th century to the 21st century.
Selected from National Geographic's rich archives, this colorful group portrait pairs female adventurers of the past with their contemporary counterparts -- in a "then and now" approach.
You'll meet Arctic explorers -- an American heiress who crisscrossed ice fields seven decades ago, along with a celebrated New Zealander who skied alone to both North and South Poles in the 1990s. You'll also join in the atmospheric exploits of Shannon Lucid and Amelia Earhart as they take off on those daring flights that wrote a new pages in the annals of aviation.
Tour the world with women who defied Victorian convention to venture alone among the headhunters of Borneo or to see first hand the hidden corners of Africa, India, and Japan. Witness world record-breaking moments by such latterday legends as Sylvia Earle, whose explorations of the ocean floor earned her the nickname, "Her Royal Deepness," and Catherine Destivelle, the beautiful French superstar of modern mountaineering.
Featuring photographs, art, and period illustrations, as well as an introduction by Reeve Lindbergh and a 1,500-year time line of women's adventuring, "Living With Cannibals" offers vivid testimony to the wanderlust, daring, and determination of these intrepid journeyers.
Whether kayaking remote Tibetan rivers or bottle-feeding baby orangutans, bicycling to India or battling icebergs off the coast of Greenland, each woman profiled here demonstrates her unswerving devotion to a dream.
Golden Prague seemed mostly gray when Patricia Hampl first went there in quest of her Czech heritage. In that bleak time, no one could have predicted the political upheaval awaiting Communist Europe and the city of Kafka and Rilke. Hampl's subsequent memoir, a brilliant evocation of Czech life under socialism, attained the stature of living history, and added to our understanding not only of Central Europe but also of what it means to be engaged in the struggle of a people to define and affirm themselves. Reissued now, during the tenth anniversary of that astonishing upheaval known as the Velvet Revolution, A Romantic Education includes an extensive updated afterword based on Hampl's annual return trips to Prague and the Czech countryside. Here is an excellent introduction to what was once the unknown "other Europe" behind the Iron Curtain and is now the continent's hottest new travel destination. Once again, as she did in a darker time, Hampl sees the texture beneath the surface of things and intuits the changing life of one of Europe's most bewitching cities. A Romantic Education is an exquisite journey into history and into the conundrum of personal memory