" />Reviews Published 50 Book Reviews Professional Reader 2016 NetGalley Challenge

giovedì, giugno 30, 2016

Llewellyn's Complete Book of Tarot - A Comprehensive Resource - by Anthony Louis

Do you like Tarots? Do you want to start to read them? Are you curious about one of the most important kind of divination in this world? You read tarots but you want to learn something else?
So, this book
Llewellyn's Complete Book of Tarot - A Comprehensive Resource -

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is for you!
Written by Anthony Louis, his author has previously written other books for Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. about this topic.

Louis is a great estimator, passionate and of tarots reader since he was little.

Maybe he told in the book, because he studied in a catholic reality where of course this stuff was not seen very well, the little boy started to develop a big curiosity about astrology and occultism, later falling in love for tarots.

In this book Louis will tell us how we should read tarots,  with a long story of  tarots, born in Italy many centuries ago. A real cult for Italians. Very important families created wonderful, stunning tarots in late 1400 most of them unfortunately gone forever.

Tarots will read Louis will be the one of the common italian playing cards with the four seeds of Swords, Coins, Cups and Wands.

I was a tarot reader and I am still a passionate one although I loved to read this book also because I hadn't never learnt how to read our italian playing cards, the most common ones. I have the Egyptian tarots, the Native American tarots. Being a Sagittarius maybe that's the answer.

Maybe.

Anthony tells that some friends of him have more than 100 different kind of tarots. Wow!

Reading tarots can be more simple for some people than not for others.
What Louis says is that practicing and intuiting what the tarot wants to say to the person in front of us the first condition. We mustn't think a lot. When we have the first intuition we know that it is the one for the person in front of us.

We should be free of every strong emotion when we read tarots, Louis says and our mind open to the divination. We mustn't read tarots under stress. Tarots wouldn't speak.

What the reader should do with her/his client?

He/she must be honest with the client because of course it means also to be honest with the spirits and Superior Entity that are telling to us what it will happen to that person in the following months.

Louis has also written a special Hippocratic Oath for Tarot Readers in this sense.
Sometimes tarots can clarify and help also people in need. In real need of answers. Journaling, keeping track of what the tarots wants to say to us become fundamental. Tarots should be read two times per year and reader should always be paid because a payment means that the reader is a serious person.

An interesting section interests the zodiac signs.
And then: a long long section you will fall in love for all dedicated to the meaning of all the most important Major Arcane and common seeds.
Enjoy it, and start to read Tarots!
Oh: and Happy Journey into the Souls!

Thanks to Netgalley.com! for this book.


Anna Maria Polidori

Roald Dahl: A biography by Jeremy Treglown

The dad of Charlie and the chocolate factory in a wonderful new detailed biography on bookshops these days
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Who was Roald Dahl?
I know him as the writer of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Being a Johnny 22_10 Depp's fan I appreciate the movie created by Johnny Depp in couple with Tim Burton charlie1 trailer01005 so badly and of course later I read most of Dahl's production.

I didn't know anything of Dahl's private life, his character. Nothing.
Reading this book cover91621-medium of the former editor of the Times Literary Supplement Jeremy Treglown: Roald Dahl a Biography published by Open Road Integrated Media every reader will open a fascinating window in Roald Dahl's life discovering myriads of anecdotes of an extraordinary, sometimes eccentric man.
Treglown has been more than complete and exhaustive. He analyzed all Dahl's life with incredible cure, passion and love.
Dahl was a man, Treglown writes with the desire to return to childhood maybe because during his childhood he lost a lot of components of his family.
Not a premature writer at all, Dahl became successful after the 40s.
Oh yes, he wrote most of the time, but real success would have knocked at his door only lately.
His best and remarkable books: The Gremlins, George's Marvellous Medicine, The Witches, Matilda, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, with a first movie in 1971 and another one wanted by the couple Tim Burton and Johnny Depp in most recent times, 2005.
Roald Dahl was for sure a macho man. Very tall and handsome characteristics these ones of his dad. His parents were both Norwegians.
Dahl didn't always appear at his best with people. A friend of Dahl revealed at Treglown that it depended which side he wanted to let you show.
Born on Sept 13th 1916 his dad Harald died when he was still 4 years and other disgraces and lost interested his family so little Dahl started to being affectionate to his mom to him an icon of perfection if compared to all the rest of women of the world, classified by him "witches." Roald was called by his mother "The Apple". Being the little man of the house everyone after the departure of his dad waited a lot from him.
What kind of kid was Dahl? A toddler fascinated by birds, butterflies, and highly influenced by the rich traditions of Northern European Fairy-Tales, and in particular by witches.
Roald Dahl wasn't a great scholar although he loved reading. He was interested on authors with a certain masculinity in their writing as for example was Kipling.
Can we say the author of the book asks, that Dahl had a distorted personality and reticence about schoolboy homosexuality?
When in Repton Dahl assisted at various episodes and he didn't hesitate to report this behavior.
Bullism was a reality of a certain importance but Roald Dahl, tall and strong couldn't risk to be bullied by his companions.
Once at Repton Dahl felt melancholy for his mom, his dad. He also started at home a collection of birds' eggs.
Contradictions in Dahl are numerous. If he complained for the behavior of some schoolmates, at the same time he didn't hesitate to put sadistic and cruel nicknames at his oldest friends reports Treglown.
Young Dahl discovered a room that became his refugee and where he loved to spend his afternoon every Sunday. He also started to develop a big passion for photography and at school he played football, cricket. He was also a passionate of golf.
Because his votes were not excellent it was excluded to him Cambridge or Oxford. He found a work in a refinery and he drove a truck while at the same time he worked at London in the Shell's office.
Dahl found attraction for girls contemporaries like him but also, maybe because there weren't serious implications in this case, for married ladies.
His desires of visiting with Shell Africa accomplished and once returned his positions close to the ones of the colonialism.
Once published Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, some polemics involved the role of the Oompa-Loompa for this reason.
An old friend of Dahl introduced the future writer of Charlie at the beauty of flowers and in particulars orchids.
When the war started to be seriously real for express desires of Roald Dahl the family moved from Kent to Wales because Dahl thought maybe Kent could be bombarded.
Once in war his mom always in his thoughts and when he had a bad accident injuring back and nose, reconstructed, her mom wrote him eight letters waiting anxiously for his answer.
Once the war over he was introduced at the White House and Hollywood started to flirting with him.
The reason The Gremlins, inspired at the last Second World War Conflict.
Disney, apart Snow White, a big success of 1937 hadn't known big hits with Pinocchio and Fantasia, and they were searching for some novelties.
The Gremlins became a Disney Picture book published by Random House.
This first experience with a major like Disney meant to Dahl the beginning of his career as a writer although it was still unclear to him if he wanted to become a writer for children or adults.
Alfred Knop read Taste in 1952 published by The New Yorker and searched for him. Dahl in contact with him, more than pleasant to share with him his material. This one started to be published in various magazines.
Times passed by and in 1968 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory a big success for the author and as we know a first movie as told before realized in 1971.
In 1980s Dahl reclaims paperback rights to six most important titles, starting a new collaboration with the Viking Penguin and the division of children's book created by Penguin, Puffin.
Dahl has had a lot of women but the most important ones two. He knew Pat Neal when still young although their relationship weird enough. The two will divorce in 1983 when Dahl 66 and Neal 56. Dahl in the while met another woman Felicity with which she was living an affair from various time.
Talking of competition and again relationship with other writers Roald Dahl didn't offer any kind of support at Salman Rushdie when he lived a terrible experience immediately after his book The satanic Verses released. This connection with Rushdie always cold.
Roald Dahl started to experiencing a strong back pain and later it was discovered leukemia.
The author said that he could have coped with death but he was sad because dying would have meant to live his family although according to him world wasn't all that great place where to live.
Dahl died on November 23 1990.
After his departure it was created a foundation helping literacy, neurology, hematology. In 1992 the foundation helped an illness still not very well-known: epilepsy. It was built a center, and donated a minibus for school with epileptic children.
Roald Dahl is this and much more reading this informative, great, stunning book written by Jeremy Treglown and I am more than sure that the author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory will reserve a lot of surprises to all his fans around the world as this book did with me.
Many thanks to netgalley.com and the publisher.


Anna Maria Polidori

martedì, giugno 28, 2016

The Book of Spice: From Anise to Zedoary by John O' Connell

Revelation can be sometimes a dish of tandoor.
The Book of Spice: From Anise to Zedoary  written by John O' Connell and published by Pegasus Books, is a remarkable, colored, delicious i intense, persistent book as only a spice can be, and the product of a love started thanks to...Aunt Sheila.

Oh yes!

For O'Connell passion for spices started thanks to his Irish Aunt Sheila (not blood related but a close friend of his mom and children affectionate to her) some decades ago  and yes, that tandoor dish he ate during a pic-nic at Hyde Park when he was still 8-9 years changed his life forever.

Aunt Sheila was incredibly intelligent. An Irish lady with great potentialities. Aunt Sheila was in grade to change the culinary destiny and...palate of this still little boy forever.

A new world as a revelation appeared in front of little John. An open door still hermetically closed abruptly opened and ready for him to be discovered. Indian food, spices, spicy food. What a colored experience, what a full immersion in history, customs, traditions, dishes of exotic, distant, sunny lands still unexplored.

O'Connell tells that the experience lived with aunt Sheila 30 years ago changed  the way he would have lived food later, the way of cooking it, and what to eat.

The use of spices is old. Old enough to re-call the old Egyptians and the use they did of spices, or the Crusades, that brought to Italy, thanks also at the presence in Sicily and Spain of Arabs various spices.

But..what is a spice? A spice is not a herb although it's curative like a herb, but it's a part of a plant or bush. It can be the root, the seeds of a plant. A part of a whole able to give more taste to our dishes.

In the past also remarkable men  fell in love for spices.

Spices meant intestine wars for trying to bring them to Europe at some point but the author is more than sure that maybe without these fights, and without this competition and without spices, Europe maybe would have never known any kind of Renaissance. At that time spices were truly expensive and they couldn't be used by common people.

Columbus, Magellan discovering the America and most of the world brought new spices in Europe as well.

Many book recommendations if you are a spicy-lover and tales and legends, propriety, history of many known and less known spices analyzed one-by-one. The most beautiful part because each spice has a peculiar story, recipes, remedies, legends and O'Connell is truly detailed in the reconstruction of each of them.

If you want to do a very good figure, present this book to someone you love. Thanksgiving, Christmas time the best moment of the year because cookies and dishes are pretty spicy and a good cooker or baker surely can appreciate this informative, interesting, amazing book.

Every time we use a spice in fact, we use History.

Every time we use a spice we are brought in a distant part of the world, in an exotic place.
Every spice means a long History, with its legends, traditions, curative properties, and a lot of culinary dishes.



Thanks to NetGalley.com!


Anna Maria Polidori

Bird Magic by Sandra Kynes

Beautiful, enchanting, magical. It's this and much more Bird Magic by Sandra Kynes published by Llewellyn Publications.


It's a powerful story of the  Bird Goddess and the meaning of birds for culture all along the centuries. A wonderful study very appreciated by me, because it touched the most important cultures, from Greek to Latins passing through Egyptians, Celts, and many more other cultures.

What you can find in the book? Without to discovering too much of course this one is a book for a true believer. Believer of what? Of course of the power of the Bird Goddess and the messages able to be communicated by birds during our life.

The bird as goddess has always been represented  in ancient times starting from the Prehistoric, Neolithic, when in caves men and women loved to represent little figurines of a Bird Goddess. With the time also The Egyptian with Isis gave to this Goddess the shape of a bird, like also Greek and other remarkable old cultures as the Indian one or the Celtic culture where the raven the crow and the eagle the God Lugh. Later Christianity represented with a dove symbol of peace the bird. Why all this interest for Bird?

Because substantially a bird has always been read as magical by man. A bird is able to flying, a characteristic unknown by man. We can fly thanks to airplanes, but we are not free to go where we would want to go just by ourselves.
A bird can goes in many places seeing the world under a complete and different aspect. A bird is a messenger. Remember when people used to send letters through pigeons?



Shamanism loved to use birds for traveling between the world. Many cultures loved to wearing also pieces of birds' bones (and feathers)because it was known that the force of bones could be renewed wearing them. A sparkle of the force the divine bird had had could sparkle also into a man.

I also remember Romans loved to watch birds for good luck. Romolo and Remo followed this tradition. Romolo would have become the first King of Rome as predicted by birds.

Wonderful reconstruction of all the old history of the Bird Goddess, later Kynes explains how to keep cheerfully close to us and in our garden or backyard birds. Feeders, a good attitude, will help birds to stay close to us, in particular if they notice that we are friendly. Of course nesting houses can also be helpful. It's important not just leaving food to birds during the winter-time but also during spring and summer time.

Prayers and altars for divination can of course be added for invoking the spirit of the Bird Goddess.

We all know the big tradition of hunting eggs and decorate them during the Easter Time. A joy for all family and in particular for little children.

An egg can also be decorated as a talisman, Sandra explains for various purposes like to attracting abundance. The author will explain also the history and tradition of decorating eggs.

What is an egg? An egg means fertility, potential life. An egg reminds us to the mystery of life, it's arcane. It creates questions without answers: the chicken was born before the egg? Dinosaur laid eggs. Who was born before? The dinosaurs or the eggs?
It's a mystery.

Birds are helpful for establishing a good connection with the other world and with the Bird Goddess.

Birds imagines put also in graves of children. Owls in particular had the role of protecting the dead one during his/her trip in the Other Dimension and at the same time as help for the people still alive of that family in pain.

Lilith the Divine Owl symbol of death and rebirth.

Many rituals for trying to attract the power of  Bird Goddess.

The power of three as a number another wonderful chapter that I am sure will intrigue all of you in an esoterical trip that will clarify and will explain why during the centuries the number three has always been considered the perfect number for excellence.


Many exercise for visualize your bird guide.

A long portion of the book will explain you all the meaning of the most common birds and how you can use their power for attracting their potentialities.

I picked up the owl because it's two years I have owls in my barn.These year three little owls, their name Johnny, Alice and Joe, and two years ago, Gustavo.

The owl as explains very well the author is symbol of what it is unknown in the world. An owl is symbol of clairvoyance. An owl will see before us what it will happen and will prepare us. The force of the obscurity able to let see to them also the unknown, putting a clear connection and a bridge between these two worlds and dimensions, between light and obscurity, known and unknown, present and future.

An owl can be symbol of death but also or rebirth
(some pics of Gustavo!)
When I tell you that I suggest you warmly this book it's because your money will be very well spent.

Not only there is a complete list of American birds, but there is the entire story of the Bird Goddess and the meaning of birds for all the ancient and recent cultures, and trust me when I tell you that, accurate, serious and profound.

A bird is not a just a bird. A bird is a messenger of God, of the Divinity of our superior Force, because we are not alone.
A bird means always something. If a bird will stop by close to you just listen.
Some news are waiting for you!
Thanks so much Netgalley.com!


Anna Maria Polidori

sabato, giugno 25, 2016

The Book of Sacred Baths by Paulett Kouffman Sherman



I have always been a fanatic of bath, I don't know you, considering the shower a cold practice. Someone who hurries goes for a shower, someone who can, a privilege sometimes to take some care of himself/herself prefers a long bath.



What proposed by Paulett Kouffman Sherman in The Book of Sacred Baths something more intense, superlative and beauty, because she will focus on the sacrality of baths suggesting us myriad of possibilities for cuddling ourselves not just with warm water and soap but implementing the experience with healing crystals, candles of the color we want for asking help, essential oils, bath salts. Imagination is endless. These instruments will help us to heal our soul, to stay much better with ourselves and others, and for "Revitalize our Spirit."

The author of this stunning book published by Llewellyn Publications will conduct us at the sacrality of bath, dedicating a section at the importance of bath in other cultures, but also at the symbolism of a bath.

Water for example as a symbol of purification, not just physically but also emotional.
Once before we were born we lived in water, so water is also symbolism for life, regeneration, re-birth.

A bath can for sure heal, because it will bring us relaxation and a best good mood.

The author suggests of keeping a journal where we can write our impression once experienced a sacred bath.

She will explain the use of candles, herbal teas, and all the necessary for living an unforgettable experience.

A sacred bath, 52 in total the one treated by the author, can be invoked for the most diversified reasons.

There are sacred baths for love, marital baths, for calming nerves, for set free our emotions, for our Spirit.

There will be baths for invoking the protection of the Archangel Raphael (healer), or other angels as well.

Thanks to this book you will discover the best sacred baths for you and first of all the power of a relaxing, warm moment.


Wonderful book, I strongly suggest it to everyone.

Thanks to netgalley.com I read this book.




Anna Maria Polidori





Healing Spices by Kirsten Hartvig

Healing Spices written by Kirsten Hartvig and published by  Watkins Publishing is a very good, enchanting, magical book about the world of spices.
Spices are commonly used in the USA for baking, cooking, but we still know that they can heal also our body?

Yes: as in the past herbs were for example our medicines, when chemical medicines didn't exist, spices have the same role.

It's a fascinating trip this one presented by Kirsten Hartvig, and it will be bring you to a great quick but intense History of Spices long something like 4000 years.

Spices once were more precious than gold and just rich people could afford them.

In the past if some sailors were able to enter in possess of just three-four spices, nutmegs etc, re-selling them to someone else, they would have become immensely rich. Spices in fact in the past were reasons of conflicts, wars and their prices prohibitive for common people.

Spices became with the time very affordable and with also the intense cultivation not just where spices were "born" but also in other countries, let's say that now the situation is tranquil and everyone can cook and bake with them.

50 spices and super-spices taken in considerations in the book with great curative powers.

Some of them: Cumin, Ginger, Chilli Peppers, Cardamom, Nutmeg, Lemongrass, Juniper, Pomegranate, Vanilla, Saffron, Tamarind.

Each spice analyzed by the author. Food profile, nutritional profile, health profile, adding sometimes some notes.

More than 100 delicious and yummy recipes will be later proposed. Each recipe will let you discover the nutrient balance, vitamins and mineral contained plus health benefits.

Go for it, this book is wonderful and can be also a very good gift for some friends!

Thanks to Netgalley.com I read this book.




Anna Maria Polidori

The Spiritual Practice of Good Actions by Greg Marcus Ph.D


The Mussar movement is a Jewish ethical, educational and cultural movement developed although it exists from many centuries in particular by the Orthodox Jewish in Lithuania in the 19th century.

The Mussar the principal inspiration for the author of The spiritual practice of good actions Greg Marcus P.h.D. The book published by Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. I read it thanks to Netgalley.com.




Substantially the author, Jewish, didn't want to write a book just for Jewish people. This book can be with tranquility bought by everyone, of every other religion of this world.
I am catholic and I enjoyed reading it a lot because at the same time I learnt a lot of another religion, discovering that maybe there are differences between our religions but substantially God is one and the values taught by God to us the same ones.


This book starting from religion and the Message of God wants to better our soul developing our best part of it, correcting our lacks. It is a rational book, plenty of citations from the Bible, Talmud but at the same time with important,tender messages that slowly slowly we will discover together.


Greg Marcus P.h.D. starts to saying that everyone could create a large or little Mussar group for sharing the experiences and that big journey that it is life.

What it is necessary to do with Mussar to exercise our mental muscles.

Marcus writes that there are 13 different soul trait profile in the Mussar and this book in 26 weeks will be in grade to let you discover all these 13 trait.

What is it important in our life first of all? And what it must be important?

To do good things, to be good people, affirms the author.

Why this?

Because every man is not a creature with a soul, but He Is a Soul.

The Passover tells the author an important moment for asking questions. We are the mirror of God, His imagine in this world and we all have free will although not everyone can use it richly for developing ourselves in the respect of course of ourselves and the other ones.

The author suggests to keep a journal during this process, and starting yoga or tai chi. Meditation just few minutes per days for relaxing the mind.

The journal should be written at night when the day is complete, the mind relaxed from the tensions of the day, and it is possible to put down the impressions.

It is strongly suggested by the author to keep a Gratitude Journal. Mr. Marcus says that it's not just important to be grateful for what we have positively received from life, but also for the negative facts.
The author thinks that we should force ourselves to try to see the good side of every things. For living better.

Plus, a gratitude journal will help a lot people. It's like to see two rivers, one with clean water and one, because maybe rained too much pretty muddy one.

It can be a good analysis of your character and your trait.

And now the various trait.


Humility is to recognize our place in the world. Too much can cause arrogance, too little perpetual victim of the situations.


Patience, is an important treat of our character. It means capacity of waiting, it means to be in grade to sort out problems waiting patiently, although the author remarks that waiting too much means procrastinating and not acting and rushing too much can also be reason for ruin everything.


Trust.
The author suggests of trust yourself, God and life. People are free. Free to choose the good the bad, God or Evil, although let's remember that God will always be close to us in particular in difficult moments of our life and  when we choose the "evil's strategy."

Loving-Kindness means doing something without to expect anything in return. The author speaks so of the good exercise of the experiment: "Pay it forward" a book written by Catherine Ryan Hyde and that I read many years ago. Beautiful!
You do something good to someone and then this someone must do something good to someone else, but not at the person made a favor to him. It's a spectacular way for keeping gratitude alive, because it's a chain. A chain of love. Solidarity, help in motion. You can try this experiment also with people that you don't know.

Truth another important trait. Who is realistically honest and tell the truth?
Truth can be in fact subjective. How many times for example we tell a tale of a fact we have participated in noticing particulars that other didn't see, or vice versa? And thinking maliciously that the other ones are telling lies just because we haven't seen what we should have seen? All our souls are different and each of us bring some light in this world and it is different from person to person.
Marcus says that the Judaism and the Mussar affirms only God can sits upon the Throne of Truth and I guess it's true.
God the only one knows the Beginning, the Middle and the End.

But is it always indispensable to tell the truth? NO!!! No, and no when it means to ruin situations and families. These ones are commonly called "white lies." If you know that something in a couple is wrong, better to keep you mouth closed and tells some little white lies. Maybe with the time the couple will sort out their problems and so on.

Honor is very important. For gaining more honor we must honoring other people and not judge anyone and we must try to find the goodness in every human being.

I previously talked of Gratitude. The author, back to the topic remembers us of being grateful for our entire life, for the good and the bad things. After all it's the mixture of these experiences able to define us and our character. We must be in grade to see the beauty and funny side of every situation.
Marcus says that the Talmud teaches: "The rich is who is happy with his lot."


Order. Living a life too ordinated means obsession and lack of freedom. It's important to learn that we can live in order, keeping our house very cleaned, keeping maybe our objects  obsessively always in the same place for example on a desk, but that although we do that,  we won't never never never have realistically any kind of similar control on our life and events. Life is out of our control. Once we learn it we will relax a bit,  living with more creativity. The author suggests of avoiding too much disorder, synonym of chaos.
Order gives confidence.


Silence. In silence we find God. In the silence we also can keep things for ourselves without to saying too much. In silence at the same time we can't develop any kind of creativity. Our speech let's also remember can influences a lot people around us, so our words are like stones.

Equanimity is the calmness of soul. The author concludes the book analyzing also Fear of Consequences, Awe of Majesty and remembering to all of us, that wonder and mystery are two important wonderful characteristic of our soul and should be developed, leaving open the door to them.

Oh: and of course once you have finished the book and the various exercises, continue to practice for being always more a great human being.



Anna Maria Polidori

martedì, giugno 21, 2016

Passages Across Time by Bonnie Howell

What a wonderful, inspiring and romantic world is the one painted with words by Bonnie Howell in her book Passages Across Time!





I choose this book on netgalley.com because I love books where past and present are strongly connected, where there are letters, journals able to "speak" at the present and where there is an intriguing story behind.

I knew that I wouldn't have been deluded. My expectations completely satisfied.

The cover is simply amazing, the reading wonderfully intense and gratifying.

This book will cuddle you, if you are a woman letting you discover the best sides of life.

Taking time for ourselves first of all. Long baths, warm teas able to comfort body and soul, good and quality sleeping-time, great food, traveling, our wonderful Italy (and Paris, France) one of the places favorite by the author for her protagonists, a good house where to stay in peace, the power of memories thanks to letters, journals and pictures left by Ancestors, the love of Lord, friends, a man in love able to wait.

It's a precious book. A book of women. Independent women, lucky women, women who lived a lot, women who discovered a diversified and sometimes also rich world and that at the end returned in a more little dimension remembering that the real richness is not "into" the power of money but in the power of little things, love, family, friends. It's a book where all these women, the ones of the past and CJ the protagonist, were and are strongly independent. The desire of explore the world, the desire of not settling down with simplicity, or maybe yes, but with Mr.Right as it happened with the first and second husband of the great grand mother of CJ one of  the main treats of their character.

The story starts with CJ at Los Angeles. Wonderful life,  beautiful and stunning fiance, good work. We find the girl all busy. She is organizing her wedding. CJ has the life everyone wants. She lives in a multi-cultural and exciting city, plenty of friends, with a fiance she loves, soon her husband.  She couldn't be more happy.

But maybe God has other plans for her. Yes because something is going on wrong.

One day Bryan, his fiance, accompanied by another beautiful creature, at just less than a week from the great event confess her: "I married this girl. Today"

"Ops...Ahem...Wow...Did I lose something in the while?" maybe the thoughts of CJ...

Astonished CJ's life turned upside down. She thought that a new and maybe definitive chapter would have been written with this marriage and now she is alone. Alone with herself and her thoughts.

When she discovers her granny is dead she returns at her granny's home.

Wonderful to see again all her old friends although at first her style and "character" pretty aggressive, she had forgotten the lazy times of a countryside and a little reality.

Married and with children most of her friends at the town remembers her with great love and they start to stop by at her house for bringing food and re-starting a new friendship. Everyone knew of her return. In little realities it's impossible to keep a secret.


While CJ is trying to recuperate thanks to good intense sleeping time, long baths, great sweet tea, cookies, good food her relationship with reality, she re-discovers Sam as well. Sam the most important boy of her teen-age age. She loved him.
And Sam although of course in the while wrote important pages in his own life, is absolutely interested to start a very important chapter of his life with CJ.

Very soon CJ discovers that her old granny Anne left all her patrimony to her. Not just the house where she is recovering after the big stress of being abandoned by Bryan.

Apart the money left by her granny, a lot, CJ finds some letters left  by her granny. Anne wrote her these letters for explaining why she had chosen her and not her mother and for telling her something more or her past life.

Plus, granny Anne added also the precious journals 8they start from 1909) of her great grand mother, for a complete portrait of this women and family.

CJ starts to understands that her granny Anne before to become a tranquil lady of a tranquil town traveled a lot, discovered the world, had had a lot of men (unbelievable for CJ) who loved her and some of them left her a fortune.

Her great grand mother more unlucky, spent a life surrounded by various disgraces but making at the same time interesting experiencing. Both of these ladies of the past in love for a reason or another, work, pleasure, for traveling.

CJ starts to be confused reading these letters because she doesn't know what to do. A quick return to Los Angeles, rich and without too many thoughts, or spending the rest of her life in a tranquil place?
Does she want to travel like her ancestors? What does she want from life? Sam or more excitement?

She still doesn't know. But she knows for sure that people of her town adores her, and Lord will be back for trying to help her to find her way in this world.

An important thematic the book put in evidence is the importance of richness when shared with others and the importance of work.

Lord is everywhere. In little actions, in inspired actions.Lord is everywhere and doesn't abandon anyone.

I strongly suggest this book to everyone because it is written with great love. Readers will feel a lot of warm. They will be wrapped up only by good feelings, and they will feel the sensation of being loved always loved by life and Lord in an optimistic book plenty of good values, and great memories.



Anna Maria Polidori







domenica, giugno 19, 2016

The great message left by my beloved mother Madelyn

Elaine Sanchez, author of the book: Letters from Madelyn Chronicles of a Caregiver talks with me about her mom Madelyn powerful and bubbly caregiver and this role sometimes not always pleasant but so indispensable for families




Elaine Sanchez is the author of Letters from Madelyn - Chronicles of a Caregiver.
The story is about Madelyn’s experience of caring for her husband, Quentin, after he suffered a stroke on October 30, 1993. 

During this long time, in order to de-stress herself, Madelyn wrote letters to her daughter Elaine about her life with Quentin.

The final result is a journal of seven beautifully detailed years, in which Madelyn  described every possible little or big fact of her life. She wrote about neighbors, her flowers and garden, Quentin's condition, church activities, as well as the books  she loved to read and her thoughts about life.

The final result is wonderfully touching.

Elaine's husband saved the letters in a cardboard moving box naming it:  "Letters from Madelyn".

On Mother’s Day 2002, Elaine’s priest asked her to talk to them about mother-daughter relationships.
Elaine thought that the best thing to do was to read some passages of Madelyn's letters telling also some anecdotes of her mom.
People astonished by the beauty of this letter suggested her: "Why don't you write a book with these letters?"

Elaine published the first edition of Letters from Madelyn in 2007. It was immediately a big success. I read the second edition, published on May 2016. 

Elaine wrote me a beautiful email immediately after she read my review on Netgalley.com, and she proposed an interview.

When I checked my e-mail and I read Elaine Sanchez I was so surprised. It seemed like to live in a dream. I had just finished to read and review a book where "Dear Elaine" and later "Dear Elaine and Alex" (Elaine's husband) the words most used by that hurricane of lady that was Madelyn, Elaine's mother and now Elaine was writing to me. Surreal.

It was a great joy to talk to her on the phone.
I called Elaine at 4:30 pm on a busy Italian afternoon, plenty of people at home. In Oregon where Elaine lives was 7:30 am and for what she told me it was a tranquil morning . We chatted for a hour and half.

Thanks to Madelyn's letters, I now feel like Elaine and Alex are friends.

Elaine asked me where we wanted to start our conversation with and I replied: Let’s start with Madelyn of course.

Elaine:

My parents lived on a dairy farm. Mom hated everything about it, but  she loved my father, and she had four kids to raise, so when she was in her mid-thirties, she learned how to find her own happiness from within."

Many of these letters are incredibly funny, but when I asked Elaine about her mother’s great sense of humor she admits:

"None of us are really sure if she was trying to be funny, or if we laughed because her letters were so honest and true."

Intentional or not, one thing is for sure, tells me Elaine: "Madelyn was funny, truly funny. " Ad she was in grade to read reality under a funny perspective. It helps a lot.


Elaine and her mother developed a big friendship. They have always been very closed.

Why?

"I’m not sure. It could be because there weren’t other girls of my same age close to me. But I suspect it had more to do with the fact that she was just a wonderful mother!

Elaine explains that when she attended the little small country school of her town with her elderly brothers in her classroom just 8 children (20 in total in the entire school) there was just another girl in her classroom, all the rest males. That little girl lived at just two miles of distance from her house. Elaine was alone at that time and her exclusive relationship with her mom more than understandable. 

In the while Madelyn in the early 1960s got a job in the town.

"She was a New Age thinker" says Elaine. "These two things made her an oddity in the conservative farming community where she and Quentin, my dad, lived. She was certainly different from the rest of women in this traditional area. She thought differently. She read different types of books. Her faith was different, and even though she did not enjoy her physical life, she believed she had the power to choose a positive attitude, finding  joy and happiness from within."


What kind of memories do you treasure the most of your mom?

"She was such an interesting and intelligent woman. From the time I was little, she was teaching me to think positively. I loved going to the milk barn and listening to her stories. She would always encourage me to try new things. She was constantly telling me:

You can be anything you want to be. 

You can do anything you want to do when you grow up. 
You are only limited by your own imagination and determination.
Elaine tells a wonderful anecdote of her mom and her

"When I grew up and I had children of my own, I treasured any one-on-one time we could spend together. When I returned home for a visit and all our men and kids to bed, we loved to take blankets and go outside. Wrapped up, warm and cozy we loved to talk all the night.

How do you think your mother would feel about you sharing her letters?

Elaine:

"She knew I was saving her letters, and about five years into her caregiving experience, she wrote and said:

"I wish I had been keeping a caregiving journal all of these years. It would be interesting to see how I have grown and changed mentally and spiritually. I also think my experiences could help others who are in a similar situation."

And now, I think she would be thrilled to know that her letters really are helping others, and she would be amazed that a woman in Italy had read her letters and thought she was a fabulous lady!"

Thanks!

Elaine continues: "Writing letters helped her cope with her emotional and physical challenges. She wrote because phone calls at that time very expensive, and she was hard of hearing. Writing helped relieve her stress and communicate more clearly. I saved her letters because I knew she wasn’t going to live long, and I knew that as long as I had her letters, she would never be totally gone."

With great pleasure Elaine speaks also of  caregiverhelp.com,  the website she and her husband developed to help caregivers like her mother cope with their anger, guilt, depression, and grief.

There are so many things that contribute to stress a caregiver, including what I call: The three F’s of Flipping Out––Fear, Frustration, and Fatigue. And there is a tremendous amount of grief associated with the gradual physical and cognitive loss a person experiences with progressive and degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s."

Elaine tells grief is another component that makes caregiving difficult:

"As a caregiver, you  grieve the loss of the life you once had. You grieve the loss of the life you thought you were going to have at this stage. You grieve the loss of your freedom, and you grieve the losses that are still to come."

Elaine became a speaker in 2007, thanks to the success of Letters from Madelyn -Chronicles of a Caregiver. When she talks at caregiving and conferences across the US, she helps family and professional caregivers to develop what she calls an "Attitude of creative indifference" toward the emotional stress of caregiving. 

The Three Steps Are:

1- Become AWARE of the situations that are causing you the greatest amount of stress. 

2 - ACCEPT You will not always feel as loving, kind, and generous as you would like to feel.

3 - ACT Determine which things you can fix, change, or control. If there is a problem that has a solution, make a plan and follow it. It you cannot do anything about the problem, try to stay tranquil.

When I asked Elaine why her mother wanted to keep Quentin at home rather than have him admitted to a nursing home, tells:

"If Mom would have put dad in a nursing home, she would have had to sell our farm ground to pay for his care. She would have lost all of her future income, and it might have taken all of their money to pay for his care. She could have been left without any resources.”

The book, Letters from Madelyn - Chronicles of a Caregiver is a wonderfully honest book, and it is often very funny. People who are or have been caregivers understand that they are not alone, and that experiencing negative emotions doesn’t make them bad people. People read the book repeats often to Elaine: “Madelyn gives me permission to be human.

Elaine wants to share with all of us also some links.

First of all the one of her website:

http://caregiverhelp.com/

where a caregiver can find all the possible informations and interact with Elaine.

Then...Watch this video!

It's about dementia and sexuality in elderly people affected by some illness. Truly funny and real.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e2VWT-3woec


This video about grief:

http://www.caregiverhelp.com/caregiver-grief-m5s1/



The book: Letters from Madelyn - Chronicles of a Caregiver is a loving tribute from a daughter to her mother that will leave you encouraged, inspired, and uplifted. 



Anna Maria Polidori





sabato, giugno 18, 2016

Canning for a New Generation: Updated and Expanded Edition by Liana Krissoff

Canning for a New Generation: Updated and Expanded Edition the new book by Liana Krissoff.
Mrs Krissoff's family expert in canning. When she left her reality for NYC, although she experimented every kind of food at the end she was missing something: food preserved.








With the help of her family, friends etc, she became great in the art of preserving food and later she wrote a first book about it.
The expanded edition offers 50 new recipes.

From the ways you can prepare jams with or without sugar, or with or without pectin (true, I use the old classic method; we add sugar, a lot of work but not pectin, taste is completely different) you can of course preserve with various methods many other food, veggies or vegetables in every season of the year.

This book will introduce to the reader an explanation of all the various ingredients that will be implemented in the vegetables or fruits and later will offer many great recipes for food preservation.



The book published by Abrams the perfect gift for a friend.


I read it thanks to netgalley.com


Anna Maria Polidori

giovedì, giugno 16, 2016

Highly sensitive people in an insensitive world -How to create a Happy Life - by Ilse Sand

Are there many highly sensitive people in this insensitive world? Who are them and how can they  resist at the various stressing situations that they will meet along their life?

Ilse Sand in his newest book: Highly sensitive people in an insensitive world -How to create a Happy Life - published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers will answer these questions and many more.


When a person is very sensitive can lives in a condition of biggest stress respect to someone else with proper life- anti corps.

You mustn't imagine that people living in this human condition are few. All the opposite. Maybe most of us.

This expression, highly sensitive person explains the author is pretty new and introduced for classifying anxious, stressed people.

Are you anxious? A bit depressed and introvert? Neurotic?

Do you have low self-esteem? Have you got some difficulties in socializing? You can be a highly sensitive person. Welcome in this numerous club of people.

The sensitive person can be stressed for little things, recovering his/her energy slowly in comparison to a "normal" person.

Highly sensitive people are unable sometimes to cope with life, people and events.



This book will help them to living a plenty and beautiful life.

Moderation to the author Ilse Sand the best word to adopt.
A sensitive person will be mentally tired with more simplicity than a normal subject.

She/he will need more rest than another one,  she/he won't be in grade to stay in company with a lot of people for a long time because she/he absorbs more mental energy.

Some people can be cause of more stressing than other ones for the highly sensitive person because he/she absorb their energy.

It's important to be surrounded by good people as reminds the author.

The highly sensitive person in fact needs to rest for a longer time because too much stressed by life in general.

The author's advices? Better to leave, better to use some common sense. Better not using too much energy.

Ilse Sand thinks that maybe a solitary life is the best solution for a highly sensitive person although it's not excluded of course (let's hope!) an union.

Surely the partner must respect the times more lazy and the mood sometimes not always at the top of the partner.

Sensitive people in general are ambitious and they want to live their life at the best. When this situation can't be possible they start to fall depressed feeling low self-esteem. A psychological therapy of support suggests the author can be good.

It's important to remind that perfection doesn't exist and that although it can be true sometimes our plans not the ones we hoped at first, this existence must be lived at the fullest.



The highly sensitive person should take care of himself/herself in a daily base, cuddling himself/herself.

A good bath, music, painting, creativity...

You will find plenty of activities and advices that Ilse Sand will share with you for living a happiest and relaxing life during your spare time.

Yes because the highly sensitive people are special human being.

For this reason but also for their past experiences - see at the voice: childhood -  they can live with difficulty the present.

The author suggests, considering anyway the good character of these people and so the opportunistic friends that they can accumulate thanks to their good heart (they don't love to be angry and they don't search for conflicts) to become more selfish in the good sense of the word.

When a highly sensitive person thinks that it is too tiring to accomplish a friend asking for a favor he/she must speak and tell that maybe it's not the case to do this favor all the times. If that specific friend is a real friend will stay.
It's important to take care of ourselves, says the author first of all.

Enjoy this book plenty of advices, sunny and wise proposals for a good life!

A great joy to read this book thanks to netgalley.com.



Anna Maria Polidori


















martedì, giugno 14, 2016

The Mother Letters - Sharing the Laughter, Joy, Struggles, and Hope - Amber Haines and Seth Haines

This precious and felt book The Mother Letters  published by Revell was born for an intuition and a decision of these two writers, Seth and Amber Haines.



Seth Haines and his wife Amber had had in just three years three children and Amber stayed at home all the time for taking care of their three babies. Just of course, it wasn't simple at all and not everyday a joke or a sunny postcard of perfection, you know.  Three babies can give a lot of work and stress.
So Seth Haines for Christmas 2008 decided and thought that maybe his wife needed some encouraging words from other moms much more than material gifts.

Wouldn't have been great to receive a bunch of letters from other Moms about their experience in the Motherhood and the meaning of it?

At first they were friends with similar experiences, later Amber's favorite bloggers, and thanks to some Seth's friends, letters arrived from all the country.Various contributors can be found at the end of the book.

Inspiration, hope, sacrifice, enthusiasm, love, sufferance, understanding.

Being a mom means not only a choice, but something irreversible. A complete dedication to another human being for the rest of the life.

The couple decided to publish  the letters received recently for creating an inspirational and encouraging book for newly moms but also for the most navigating ones because the work of a mom is never ending.

These letters are impressive for their profundity and their love and beauty of their words. Most of them  touching.

These ladies are God Believer so also when life is tragic or difficult able to cope with all of it finding joy, support, help and strength thanks to God and Jesus.

Letters the most diversified ones. There is who thinks that (true) children grow up fast and so why not remembering that first years?
Another mom thinks that living this role doesn't mean at all to be perfect. No: all the opposite. It means to choose everyday what it is good for the children.

Maybe a mom can be judged for her own decisions but something else is truly real: that child has just that mom in the entire world and he/she is growing up thanks to her. And this is the only fact that counts.

There are letters of moms reporting experiences with special children, other ones with children with some terrible illnesses and not anymore on Earth but all these letters are precious and absolutely stunning for the powerful and positive message that they spread: a message of love, understanding, encouragement a message that passes through the experience of being a mom to the one of growing up other lives also in sufferance thinking that this one was what God wanted for us.

Some of these moms didn't imagine the force that being a mother would have meant. Other ones  remembered their expectations as girls, traveling, having some fun before to settle down. Life changed forever for them with the arrival of a baby. Without regrets.

Being a mom is the greatest blessing add another lady.

There is the experience of step-mom, women who didn't biologically create children but found children of her partner and grew up them as if they would have been their children.


Enjoy this book.
It's wonderfully written, it warms the heart thanks to these beautiful letters written by enchanting souls! remembering always that the role and complexity of being a mom is terribly enchanting.



I read this book thanks to Netgalley.com



Anna Maria Polidori

Natural Curiosity by Lisa Carne

What attracted me the most when I picked up Natural Curiosity written by Lisa Carne and published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers the main theme: keeping home children giving them the proper instruction by-passing school. The first books I read about this important thematic the ones of Lill Hawkins, American from Maine, who under a great funny perspective told us the various adventures lived with her two unschooling children.

Lisa Carne and her husband lives in a countryside and they can give to their two children all the possible freedom for discovering nature.
Technology as remarked by the author has created a sort of wall between children (not only) and nature and what in the past appeared as a normal interaction between all Creatures of God, at the moment natural environment is introduced them as a hostile ad not anymore friendly place.

It's important to return at a good relationship with nature says the author.

The first years of children peculiar for putting the base of their approach to life, nature, environment.

A good childhood spent at contact with nature in general gives best people, plenty of respect for nature, and more healthy under other aspects.

One of Lisa's children, the daughter, developed at 3 years arthritis and  the author and her partner noticed that staying outside in company with wild and domestic animals, fox, sparrowhawks, helped her not only to discover the environment but also a better physical condition.

The arrival of school meant to the family the introduction of their children in a different environment where unfortunately as it happens most of the time nature, animals, wild or domestic ones not lived relaxingly, but with a lot of stress.

Although their school implemented certain programs for permitting to the children to staying at contact with nature, children where not set free to go where they wanted to go (maybe also for the responsibility felt by the teachers)  expressing who they were and doing and discovering what they wanted to discover.

For this reason and for setting free their children from a land a constrictions and restrictions which sometimes can be school as a lot of other UK's families, Lisa and her husband decided to remove their children from school educating them home. 

Their daughter healed from her illness.

The author tells that she is much more happy and joyous to spend in a best way her time at home and both these children appreciate a lot nature and all the other possible thematic as dinosaurs, life, learning in a natural and not oppressive way every possible topics, with people, their parents, who are giving them all the best in terms of education.

Thanks to netgalley.com for this great book.


Anna Maria Polidori



sabato, giugno 11, 2016

Women of Abstract Expressionism Edited by Joan Marter

This catalogue published by Yale University Press  in association with Denver Art Museum and read thanks to Netgalley.com focus the attention on an art exhibit of 40 painters, all women.

These women in the art exhibit: "Women of Abstract Expressionism" at the Denver Art Museum in 2008.

The book edited by Joan Marter with an introduction by Gwen F. Chanzit and essays by Robert Hobbs, Ellen G. Landau, Susan Landauer, Joan Marter and an interview with Irving Sandler.

The art of Abstract Expressionism started with great energy in San Francisco and New York City during the 40s and 50s.

In general in the past painters predominantly men. With this new current of art, women tried to come out putting out all their feelings, sentiments. There is everything in these paintings, from literature to music, passing through cubism (I liked a lot that paintings) poetry and in general women's diversified world.

Main artists of this movement Jay DeFeo, Helen Frankenthaler, Grace Hartigan, Elaine de Kooning, Lee Krasner, Joan Mitchell.

My impression of paintings: they're good. Sure for what I can see there were portrayed in these canvas all the complexities of these women's  feelings.



If you are interested to seeing these paintings here the places where you can find them:




Denver Art Museum
(06/12/16–09/25/16)

Mint Museum, Charlotte, N.C.
(10/22/16–01/22/17)

Palm Springs Art Museum
(02/18/17–05/28/17)





Enjoy these paintings with their peculiar force and spirit!




Anna Maria Polidori

venerdì, giugno 10, 2016

A spiritual Journey by Susan Kapatoes

Susan Kapatoes is a special soul and in this book:
A spiritual Journey I read thanks to netgalley.com she will share with her readers what she learnt from life and what she learnt through God, the Divine Source.

Susan Kapatoes received a bachelor degree in science of Nutrition at the Amherst, located in Massachusetts. She had clear and strong ideas since she was little.

She grew up she tells, in a Catholic family but at first she didn't believe in God. She also decided of giving up the Confirmation because she couldn't be sure that God existed and she didn't want to be false.

Someone later presented her a Bible and this Bible with other books always brought with her in the various localities where she was studying. The first episode let her think maybe God existed, at  college and thanks to this Bible. In a moment of discomfort, she was alone in her bedroom, she asked something to God opening a casual page of the Bible. Most people like to do that and most people receive an answer from God.

Later Susan would have felt the presence of God or of some special "angels", people disappeared from her life and sent directly from Heaven for supporting and encouraging her in a lot of other occasions.

Susan thinks that each of us can start a privileged dialogue with God or the Divine Source, or our Superior Entity. It's better to be alone, without too much crowd or confusion.

And mainly she believes that the power of positive thinking can do miracles.

She experimented it thanks to some....potatoes and a wonderful harvest, much more abundant than the ones of the previous years.
She planted these potatoes with heart "balsaming them" with good vibrations.

We must be believers, tell us the author.
Good vibes, good things happens, and good chances can appear to us at the horizons if our approach is positive.
This one the first step for a better present and future.

Susan admits it's not simple to cleaning up our mind from negative thoughts but after all shouldn't be more simple to think positively than negatively?

If we are in a sort of dark spiral in which thoughts are negative, let's force to see the other side of this coin for healing our soul.

The book is rich of examples, poems Susan writes at God and other people she is affectionate at and love to post at the end of every chapter.

It's a fresh, quick, brief book but very felt, profound and positive

Mrs Kapatoes is a believer of biological agriculture without the utilization of chemical pesticides, a warrior like many others never tired to promote a better world and a real change.
For sure, a positive vibe for this Planet!


Anna Maria Polidori

giovedì, giugno 09, 2016

My Time with the Kings by Kathryn Johnson

Kathryn Johnson AP journalist, reported one of the most amazing part of the History of the XXth century in this book: My Time with the Kings published by RosettaBooks and picked up by me at netgalley.com: the fight for building a good and equal society for everyone, rich and poor, black or white.

This human Flag Martin Luther King Jr.
He worked hard for bringing peace and equal rights between black and white. The legacy of King continued also after his assassination in Memphis April 4th 1968 at the Lorraine Motel.

Kathryn fought other personal battles as well. When she was born in 1926, no one expected from her the choice of a work like this one. At that time women were devoted just for family, or they became nurses. Good jobs of course, indispensable but...a reporter... It appeared more than a dream.

Kathryn not tall but plenty of energy, a degree in literature studied also journalism and later knocked at the door of the AP of Atlanta. The chief bureau put in clear that they didn't want around any woman with these dreams, but there was a place as secretary if interested.

Kathryn must have thought: let me be in and then I will let you see....

;-)

And in fact...

No one wanted or was interested at giving coverage to the various news of assaults against black people, or other racial stories. So these stories  assigned to Kathryn. De fact, from a simple secretary, Kathryn became a staffer of the AP, Associated Press of Atlanta.

Apart the prestigious place,  Kathryn is part of the History.

This little lady would have become a great reporter, with a special privilege: the one of reporting a big portion of one the most important crucial events of the last century.

The ideas of Martin Luther King, the fights against black people in various cities, the death for assassination of Luther King and previously of JFK, and later of his brother Bobby Kennedy, the at the end bill of rights for black people that would have changed their life for better after the march of Selma.

People that years died in various pacific demonstrations just for the desire of bringing freedom and setting free from physical and mental slavery black people.

That wonderful XX century....It was able to create idealistic people as Martin Lither King Jr. Kennedy, Gandhi. The list is endless but each of them was unique because they were people of great intellectual value.

People thought it was indispensable to fight for a better future and a best conditions for everyone.

Kathryn shared with the readers, at the beginning her biggest privilege: to be one of the closest friends of King's family.

Everything started for case when once she re-accompanied home mr King, and his wife asked her to come on in for drinking some coffee and resting for a while.

A friendship this one of the reporter with Martin Luther King and his family told with great love and continued for decades and decades


The day of the discovery of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. in Memphis Kathryn the only reporter entered at King's house. She wasn't there only as a reporter, but she was there as a friend, so she helped King's wife answering the various messages of condolences received from all the world, she baked and cooked as well while she waited for the arrival of Jackie Kennedy for the condolences.

An extended member of the family able to present some comfort and relief at four desperate children who lost their beloved dad too soon and at a poor devastated widow.

Kathryn reports her impression of the funeral of Martin Luther King and what it meant to live in the South in a moment in which the racial condition could implode abruptly in every corner of city or little village with great simplicity.

Although another century passed by from the Secession War started in 1861 and ended up in 1865, constricting the South that lost the war at setting free their slaves a lot of things in 1950-1960s not yet sorted out in the South and other part of the USA.

Kathryn remembers many anecdotes.

In a trial she was also treated differently from the rest of the reporters because a woman and so put in a different place close to other black men.

We mustn't never think that Kathryn obtained with simplicity what she obtained: freedom of reporting facts.

She fought and she won the discrimination! this time against women, a portion of History, like the racial one not yet sorted out.

A man said her during this trial: "You shouldn't stay here. You should stay home taking care of your family."


Although I didn't know many anecdotes for sure I knew of  the march of Selma, last year the 50 anniversary of this important march that brought the approval of the bill of rights.
What was the South 50 years ago?

Bands of Ku Klux Klan dangerous with white supporting blacks and black people.

Bars, café schools universities, buses...There wasn't permission for black people to enter in a place for "only white people" or staying sat in the same bus or in a café with white people.

Trying to force this guideline would have meant violence and interruption of the service.

There were universities just for black people and the introduction as explained in the book in an university in Alabama of the first two black students a male and a female that Kathryn followed like a shadow, their lessons and so on, caused some turmoils as well.

The students later suspended and re-integrated.

One of them, the girl, became a NYT's journalist and collaborator of the The New Yorker. We talk of real brains, very acculturated and at the same time discriminated because of the color of their skin.

The racial condition is modern and of great actuality because a real, plenty integration of these two communities, reading here and there, for what I can see, still distant, and black people are still feeling the white as their enemies, and the white lives sometimes black people as distant ones.


What I loved the most of this book well, being a reporter, the work of Kathryn. Because yes, of course it's also great to work everyday in a newsroom, but Kathryn...Kathryn went out, searched for the facts reporting them as more quick as possible for not burning the news.

She has seen with her same eyes the History and its Protagonists, reporting it.
This is simply, incredibly, priceless.

If you want to read a beautiful book, quick, written with love without too much sentimentalism go for this one.

It's human and real like life is.



Anna Maria Polidori

martedì, giugno 07, 2016

The life of Elves by Mauriel Barbery



                                                                           
 I live in a a countryside, in Italy, and so when I picked up this book, The Life of Elves   from Gallic Books I knew what I would have met and I haven't been disappointed. The book is translated wonderfully well and the plot to me similar, although distant at the same time for style and purpose from the one written by Joanne Harris: Chocolat.



Yes because the arrival of two outsiders in these two remote portion of lands, Spain and Abruzzo, and in two countrysides very well "captured" by the author, changed the course of the events for these simple people and lands...

The description of the italian countryside is perfect.

These kids had two gifts, the one of the vision of the past the first one in Spain and the one of music, the second living in Italy.

It's an emotional and a magical trip of sensations in  rural lands where people have a big heart and where people believes at the power of certain people and at the enchantment that they can bring with...themselves

Scenarios also big cities as Rome, where for example the musician teenager  will discover all the eccentricities of her Maestro. I recognized in that treats the ones I met in old and so-called important people when I was little and their desire of telling who they were sharing their opinions about various topics .
I was enchanted by the writing-style of Barbey. I didn't read her first book and I decided I will do that as soon as possible. To me a privilege to read her second book thanks to Netgalley.com.

I recommend this book to all that spirits in search for something magical, abstract, different, to all that people in love for discovering rural places but at the same time at all that human being in love for magic.


Anna Maria Polidori 

lunedì, giugno 06, 2016

Lazy Crafternoon by Stella Fields

Have you, dear teen, the passion for scrap, decoupage,  decoration, handmade works? Do you want to keep your  little corner of the house a beautiful, dreaming personalized place where  every object is different, colored and unique in its  genre and where also the most insignificant, old  object and item one can return to live a wonderful,  new and sparkling existence without necessarily to buying  a new one?

If your answers are all enthusiastically:  yes! to all these questions this book is for you.




Written by Stella Fields and published by Capstone,  I consider this manual I read thanks to netgalley.com  extremely useful, dreaming, colored and beautiful and it will make the joy of enthusiastic teenagers and moms and well.   

These projects,more than 50 are not difficult and  each of them cost less than ten dollars, but the  author would want to invite you and your friends at  a crazy or more "Crafternoons" as she calls these  creative moments so that you can spend and share with your  girlfriends some good time all together while  working at specific and dreaming projects.

Substantially you could re-colored or  re-personalized all your little objects of your house.

The book is divided  in fact in sections; accessories, food, decorate,  study and celebrate and for each section you will  find wonderful example for creating unique pieces.

Are you for example tired of seeing your mom sipping tea in a cup without character to you? Why not adding some  personality to it? Go for it! It will be a great gift for her.

Have you got some correspondents and do you want to  create beautiful handmade greeting cards or letters?
You will discover how to create stunning loving greetings and/or writing letter.

Your girlfriend's birthday is close, and you  presented her a wonderful gift, but uh-oh the  wrapping card? Don't worry, you will create something unforgettable.

Your smart phone's cover is not exceptional? Ready for you and thanks to your creativity an unique piece!

If you are spiritual and you would want to wear  something in theme for you there is the diffuser  necklace. You will always bring with you your  favorite oil essence for your mood! of the moment.

The glasses of your granny are becoming old, she  doesn't want to change them because she is still affectionate to them and she wants to save money but  at the same time you think she would be happy if you personalize them? You  can help her, in few simple steps!

It's spring and time to plant some flowers. You want  to add more color and romanticity. Plenty of solutions. Your friends will be surprised of the final results.

A friend presented to you a classic birdhouse, made  with good wood of course, but maybe too serious. You  will find many projects for creating one of the  most stunningly unique, colored birdhouses you have seen on  the face of Earth!

You return to school. You  bought some pencils but you think that they don't have too much color. Don't hesitate to add some tulle a beautiful project that will bring joy, color and personality at  an indispensable accessory.


Do you want to create or put in some jars something special?
Why not add some decorations?


If you go for a walk in a countryside remember to  bring home some little rocks. It will be beautiful  to decorate them with all the other members of your  family. Creations  can be the most diversified one and at the end everyone happy for the final result!


You have a correspondent in a foreign country and  you want to create a notebook or a journal. Go for  it. There is a great project in this manual.

You can create a new handbook, boxes with more soul,  creative items for your food.

Have fun, have joy, have enthusiasm and happiness!  while re-coloring, adding more  soul to most of your  favorite or maybe why not? new items!



Anna Maria Polidori

domenica, giugno 05, 2016

Sunrise Sunset - 52 weeks of awe and gratitude - by Kim Weiss


Kim Weiss  is a sunny lady living in South Florida and everytime she looked at a sunset, took a picture of it. Same with a dawn, sharing these artistic, natural creations with her Facebook's community.

After a while some of hr friends suggested her of creating a book with all these wonderful pictures. A pity not sharing them with a largest public.

The idea of Sunrise Sunset was born!


Everyone know my big attractions for sunsets and dawns and when I discovered on netgalley.com this book I wanted to see it so badly, loving it a lot, for the calming pictures, beautiful colors, inspiring words and phrases that will follow every page and every picture of a sunset or a dawn. Like to be in Paradise.



Dawns and sunsets in Florida are simply spectaculars. The author has been in grade to photograph beautiful red, yellow, colored sunsets, and stunning dawns.

Nature, we all know, is better than the best painter of this world.

The idea of not putting just pictures but accompanying them with words,  I imagine, for giving a strongest visual and emotive message to the picture visualized in that moment. In this sense, Kim has been helped by a team of creative friends all mentioned in the book.

Encouragement, gratitude, you will discover thanks to these pictures and these phrases, a spiritual trip and always a different gradation of feelings "reading" between the pictures and phrases close to it.
Published by Health Communications Inc. I strongly suggest this delicate, felt, relaxing book.


Part of money of this book goes to an association called AVA.




Anna Maria Polidori

giovedì, giugno 02, 2016

The More of Less by Joshua Becker

The more of Less by Joshua Becker published by WaterBrook is a fantastic book.

Wonderfully written, clear and concise, right to the point, fluent and intriguing the author shares through this book his new philosophy of life from 2008: the one of  Minimalism.


What does Minimalism mean ? Living with less a much more intense and plenty life.

How can it be possible to do that?

Our society is a consumerist reality where people are taken in consideration because they can spend. A compulsive society where we are overwhelmed everyday by messages, ads, publicity for let us buy always more.

We keep our houses plenty of things most of the time absolutely unnecessary or in an exaggerated number because of it.

Joshua Becker focuses in a new life-style where what it will be important won't be anymore the big house with all the expenses necessary for maintaining it, won't it be the big car, or the rich furniture of a house, but...people and their main interests in a best quality life.

In fact the author says, it is important a massive declutter of the stuff in the house for living with less but living a best life, because when we are surrounded by too many objects we lose the best part of us. We become selfish, arrogant, egoist, we are not able to seeing the other one as our brother, we are not able to giving to anyone anything because of our ego.

It's indispensable to understand that this society sometimes can be superficial. Every person in a certain moment will buy the same pair of shoes of a certain brand because everyone say that it is trendy. Just a little example but let's admit it, the human being is like a sheep: we love to follow the current.

And what does in term of quality-time and intelligence mean? A lot, because following the standards of this society means not always to follow quality, but mainly appearance. The beautiful house, the beautiful car, and so on.  

Why people are important in this society? Are they important just because of their capacities of spending money?

In the past, in the remote past, society and messages mainly spread were the ones of saving money. At the moment men, women and children are lived like potential consumers.

Speaking with a friend of mine time ago for the special issue of Christmas, topic toys, I discovered for example that children must be also very stressed by this society, because they don't have anymore any kind of certainty and any kind of real super-hero at long as we had when we were little. They explained me that children's toys are products of movies, cartoons and they can exist just for six months, one year if they are lucky.

Scary.

Back to the book, Mrs Jane, during a hard working day in the garage for Joshua Becker, introduced him at what it would have meant a complete change of life-style for this man and his family: minimalism. Jane told that afternoon to Joshua Becker that her daughter lived in the minimalism so she wouldn't never spent too much time cleaning the house but she would have had much more time to spend THIS with  friends and family.

To Becker, absent with his kid who wanted to play with him because busy in the garage, a revelation. He talked immediately with his wife and they decided to proceed and to change their life-style.

For better.

Becker explains minimalism doesn't want to say austerity.
Each Minimalist is different and starts to join this great community for personal reasons. There are reporters, retired people, teenagers in this colored group of the "Philosophers of the good time spent well and with less."

What a minimalist does is keeping space, emotive, physical, emotional  for himself/herself and for his/her family, without to be surrounded by too many redundant objects but just by the necessary.
It doesn't mean that we should avoid to have a TV, or PC or smart phone.

We should adopt a different and more healthy life-style, sober, able to let us appreciate thanks to the Minimalism our New Us.

Objects, surplus, is able to create chaos all around us and this is extremely dangerous for a good and emotive development of our real personality too much oppressed by what we are surrounded by.
It's like a sensation of suffocating. Once you will set you free from all the objects you will be free to re-construct your real Self.

Many the example introduced by Joshua Becker including of course his immense, wonderful story.

Altruism, generosity, donation, must enter in the dictionary of your new life.

It's wonderful to donate in many ways: time, money, joining an association or a charity for helping people in needs or simply assisting some neighbors in need.

From his experience, Becker discourages to sell the material once you decide to throw it away. They tried but they did accumulate just 135 dollars. So they started to call many associations and charities in need of the most diversified items they wanted to give away and Becker remembers his joy in giving away unwanted stuff able to make the difference for other men, women and children.

Becker insists that everyone once taken the decision of becoming minimalist should donate everything away without asking money, but contacting local charities.

A lady created an association of wealthy women for donating the Wedding Ring for bringing water in Africa. This association fascinated me a lot because I remembered that the same experiment was made by the ladies of the South during the Secession War of 1861-1865. Married ladies were asked to donate their wedding ring for the cause of the war.

Becker asks to everyone to live in the substance and not in the appearance.

Our society is mainly built in the appearance. Becker add that there is always more request for plastic surgeries in the USA, but gym is neglected, people eat junk food so they become always more fat developing important social illnesses. What it is important to do according to the author is to return to a normality made of friendship, family, good sleeping time, eating properly, watching less TV and adopting a more human life-style.

A wealthy life-style means less time for family, children, friends.

This book is not only beauty, it's felt, written with decision, with force and with the soul. It's extremely powerful. While you read the words of the author you start to feel what he says and while you are reading it you think: this author will make the difference for a lot of people in the world!





*I received a copy of this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for an honest review.*



Anna Maria Polidori