Thursday, May 29, 2014

Armchair BEA: Beyond the Borders


Welcome to Thursday, fellow Armchair BEA friends! Today's topic is Beyond the Borders--here's the guidelines from Armchair BEA:

It’s time to step outside your comfort zone, outside your borders, or outside of your own country or culture. Tell us about the books that transported you to a different world, taught you about a different culture, and/or helped you step into the shoes of someone different from you. What impacted you the most about this book? What books would you recommend to others who are ready or not ready to step over the line? In essence, let’s start the conversation about diversity and keep it going! 

As I said in my Intro post, one of the things I love about reading is that I get to learn about other places, cultures, and "travel" just by reading! It's so important  to celebrate and embrace diversity in our culture, and reading is an excellent way to learn more about the world and become more open minded and tolerant. Here are a few books that I've enjoyed that have helped me expand my horizons:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3273.Moloka_i?ac=1Moloka'i by Alan Brennert: I've professed my love for this book in my review, but had to address it here as well. This book beautifully describes a time in Hawaiian history that few Americans realize--and gives you a deep appreciation of their culture  that existed long before they became a US state.  I HIGHLY recommend this book. This book gave me more respect for the Hawaiian people and encouraged me to learn more about Hawaii's history.





The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows:  My best friend gave me this book as a gift, and I absolutely loved it. To be honest, despite being interested in WWII historical fiction,  I wasn't familiar at all with Guernsey, a British Crown dependency in the English Channel off the coast of Normandy, until reading this book. Set during the German occupation during WWII, this book eloquently captures a time in European history from a different perspective than most are used to.  The story is written in a series of letters, and is well worth the read.

Born on a Blue Day: Inside the Extraordinary Mind of an Autistic Savant by Daniel Tammet: Diversity doesn't just mean someone is from a different country from you--it can also include those with a unique perspective on life that is different than your own. This book is a first person account of a 27 year old high functioning British autistic savant with Asperger's Syndrome. Though his ability to empathize with others, think abstractly and deviate from routine is impaired, Tammet can easily complete complex math calculations in his head, and experiences numbers and words as shapes, colors and textures (hence the book's title.  This book helps readers understand where a person with this syndrome is coming from, and helps to develop greater acceptance of others like him.

What books help you go "Beyond the Borders"?

Happy Reading!

9 comments:

  1. I have seen so many great reviews of Moloka'i. It sounds really great. I have a habit of sticking to my comfort zone and not reading outside of that. I need to do that more often!

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    1. Moloka'i is quite possibly my absolute favorite book--although as you know it's impossible to pick just one! But it's up there in my top favorites. Beautifully written!

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  2. Added Molokai'i to my TBR -- thanks! I loved The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows.

    Joy's Book Blog

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  3. I hope you love Moloka'i as much as I did!!

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  4. Interesting that you single out the Guernsey potato peel society book, I live much closer to Guernsey than you do but I didn't know about their experience in WW2 either.

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    1. Interesting! You learn something new every day right?

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  5. my book club read the Guernsey book in January and we all loved it! What a great book that brought attention to little known Guernsey!
    I haven't read any reviews of Moloka'i but after reading your post, I'm off to read your review and see what else I can find about it. Thanks for the recommendations!

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    1. I hope you enjoy Moloka'i as much as I did!

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  6. Moloka'i is amazing isn't it? I also read Honolulu by Brennert whilst there on my honeymoon a few years ago :-)

    Brona's Books

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