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Archive for the month “January, 2013”

Review: Kabul Beauty School

Kabul Beauty School I had been looking forward to reading Kabul Beauty School . Deborah Rodriguez, the author, heads to Afghanistan after the fall of the Taliban, in part to offer humanitarian aid, and in part to escape the difficulties her life and marriage hold. More than any of the skills she learns before being sent to Kabul, she uses her knowledge of haircuts and color to serve the NGO community in Kabul, and eventually the Afghanis as well.She opens Kabul Beauty to school to train and empower the women of war torn Afghanistan, so many crushed under the weight of Taliban rule.
While I applaud her involvement, and her genunine desire to help Afghani women, even at a danger to herself, I struggle to embrace the author herself. I didn’t trust the voice of the author, the brash American who would so blantly disregard the culture of Afghanistan, favoring her own. She loves the people, but doesn’t seem to want to bend to meet them. Her recollections, instead of being heroic and charming leaned slightly more towards selfish, insincere, and at times judgemental. The beauty of the story is lost among the seeming insincerity of the narrator.

I give Kabul Beauty School by Deborah Rodriguez one star.


Library Loot: January 2 to 8

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky found at The Captive Reader. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

In my post just yesterday, I mentioned that  I would be limiting myself to two library books per visit. Well, dear reader, I have missed that goal completely in my very first visit to the library….but only by one.

Kabul Beauty School by Deborah Rodriguez has been on my to-read list for quite some time. After a rather complex procedure that involved picking the books off my Goodreads list that most interested me and crosschecking it against availability at my local library, I decided on the Kabul Beauty School.

Lipstick Jihad by Azadeh Moaveni jumped out at me as I scanned the biographies shelf this evening, so I decided to give it a try.

Trespassers Will be Baptized by Elizabeth Emerson Hancock is the third memoir on the list. This one I found while scanning the shelves in the religion section. My hope is that it is a more an encouraging remembrance of faith with some amusing anecdotes and less a bitter memory of the religion of childhood…but I guess I’ll have to wait and see.


Throwing another dart…

imagesWhen I began this blog in June, I had some rather ambitious goals. I really thought I could read and review books a few times a week, as well as post on other rather bookish topics on the days in between. This is not at all what happened, however. I missed that mark by so many days I began to lose count, making me feel like quite the blogging failure. By December, I was ready to scrap the blog and move on.

But its a New Year, all fresh and clean, and maybe before I throw in the towel I need to try again.  So, as of today, I’ve got a new look, and a few new goals for 2013 to try and make this blog a success.

What stays the same?

  • It’s still primarily a book blog. I love reading and I love sharing what I read. That hasn’t changed over the last six months, even if my schedule has.
  • Library Loot– I’ll keep posting what books I take out, even if I decide not to review them.
  • It’ll still be nerdy. This much hasn’t changed. 😉

What will change?

  • Weekend Recaps– These will be categorized as Life and Things. Friends and family living far away check in here occasionally, and  I want to be able to share what’s happening. Besides, as I started sharing my weekends I realized how genuinely boring my life is.
  • I’m not accepting books to review. I tried accepting books to review and found I could not meet the time constraints. It just doesn’t work for me. If you want to recommend a book, I’m all for it, but please, no ARC’s.
  • Library Loot will shrink. I’m limiting myself to one to two books each library visit. It will keep me from racking up fines for books I haven’t read, and it will help me focus on picking up books I actually read.
  • Any Reading Challenges must be started by March…and if I’m not enjoying it, its okay to scrap it. Blogging is more a fun side hobby than a part time job.

With these changes in mind, here are my more modest goals:

  1. To post once a week. Book Reviews, Randomly bookish topics, Library Loot, Quotes, and Life and Things Updates all count as posts.
  2. To take pictures for the blog and stop using images from the web. I credit them, but it would still be nice to start using my own images. Guess I will be purchasing a camera…. 😉
  3. To enjoy blogging a bit more. I love reading and I really do love writing. So maybe if there is a little less pressure to post, it will be fun again.

Happy New Year readers! Here’s to hoping 2013 means a bit more success on the blogging front!

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