Natural Blonde fKingsley and Karen Blixen Ms Sovich travels to remote destinations in Africa including the mysterious and almost mystical Timbuktu I enjoyed the descriptions of the places she visited and the people she met along the way during her somewhat self indulgent journey of self discovery Having been an adventurousoreign journalist Sovich s new married life in Paris with a monotonous job conformist culture and daily luxury produces in her that kind of middle class depression and ennui only an extended trip to Africa could ix This is her part autobiography part travelogue mostly self indulgent writings on her experiences which include some real moments of introspection but also a great deal of stupidity and #outright ridiculousness Frankly at times she got on my nerves at the #ridiculousness Frankly at times she got on my nerves at the time there s a hefty dose Of Myself I See Her I myself I see in her her longing or travel as an escape that sense of something out there that is missing rom everyday life something to ix things or make you a better person Or just an indefinable something Not only that I could hardly be unaware of my cry of self indulgence could eually be applied to myself what a privilege it is to travel because you are boredInteresting at times but unremarkable overall it is at least less of a wannabe self help book than some of the books masuerading in this genre thanks to Eat Pray Love Reading this as part of my 2018 YeartoClear in which I aim to get to all those books hanging around on my Kindle I loved this travel memoir so much the author Nina Sovich describes the people and places of Africa not often written about or traveled to like the Western Sahara Senegal Mauritania Mali and Niger and she does so brilliantly On every page you are suddenly transported to the small Sahara towns to ghostly Mauritanian cities and many a town or village darkened by poverty in than just a visual sense Her writing allows the reader to actually Land of a Thousand Hills: My Life in Rwanda feel the places she visits and understand them in under the skin sort of ways You don t just see a sand dune you caneel the hot breeze and the golden glow of the moon and the loneliness or peace the author elt in that moment or eel the terror seize you up in potentially dangerous situations or the way the humidity and dust makes the air heavy and difficult to breathe She doesn t just describe the sites of cities in the present day but explores the politics history and problems wherever she goes as well incorporating writings rom amous travelers who wrote about their journeys through Africa in a different era Most notable of all at least If My Love Were a Fire Truck: A Daddy's Love Song for Nina Sovich is Mary Kingsley Many reviewers on here complain about how she is privileged and how she is taking the wonderful things she hasor granted by briefly leaving her kind husband and comfortable but stressful Parisian life but her writing about these personal affairs is just another reason why I love her book so much She is so absolutely brutally honest about her inner demons and nagging worries and the things that she knows shouldn t bother her ie comfortable Parisian married life but which she still can t shake off All of her Write It When I'm Gone: Remarkable Off-The-Record Conversations with Gerald R. Ford fears and worries are laid out on the tableor all to see and it makes her that much endearing Her uest to Ready for Summer find balance in life the balance between securitydomesticity andree spiritedness is one which I can absolutely connect to as I think most people could Life is a string of experiences and adventures and above all a balancing act and her travel memoir demonstrates this so well and explains it with such a uniue story I really enjoyed reading about her travels all the different cultures and her journey both internal and outward I do think her writing strength is when she is describes the people she meets of the dialogue between herself and others I did Cyberselfish A Critical Romp Through The Terribly Libertarian Culture Of High Tech find the journey itself a bit self indulgent not to the extent of Eat Pray Love which I am sure this book is being compared to I like that she went to places one generally does not get to learn about and I have to give her credit because I do not believe anyone could get me to eat a sheep s eye san I had very mixedeelings about this travelogue At times it was very engaging and interesting to hear about Sovich s trek through the western part of Africa Her encounters with locals are eye opening appealing accounts of an oft ignored area and the detailed information about the different countries kept me listening It s with Sovich s personal journey with which I take issue Poor poor Sovich lives in Paris with her patient husband and just can t endure it I know that people seek out different places to make a home but Sovich s detailing of her misery in France put me off She passingly acknowledges her privilege and treats Africa as almost this cure all mystical place A coerência textual for people like her Iteels so very self involved despite the Write Your Novel!: Tips from a Bestseller fact that it s brimming with life. Stern Sahara Mali Mauritania and Niger bringing their textures andlavors into vivid relief On Sovich’s travels she encounters rough and tumble Chinese sailors a Venezuelan doctor working himself to death in Chinguetti indifferent French pensioners RVing along the coast and a close knit circle of Nigerien women who adopt her into their Dogs Behaving Badly fold showing her the promise of Africa’sutu. ,
Criptions of interesting pieces of West AfricaSo while every First Year Teacher: Wit and Wisdom from Teachers Who've Been There few chapters would paint an evocative picture of somelyblown town in West Africa the locals and few chapters would paint an evocative picture of some lyblown town in West Africa the locals and expats that washed up you would have a chunk of poor little rich girl whining about how tough her life in ParisUSactually gasp having to have a job could be Some lengthy passages about her husband who seems to send the cheues without passing comment were rankly tedious I just didn t care about home life in Paris I perhaps mistakenly bought this to hear about Timbuktu Mali and NigerBut when she gets going there are
SOME EXCELLENT PIECES ARRIVING IN MALI OR STAYING IN excellent pieces arriving in Mali or staying in in Niger are very good with the cast of locals brought
to life She uses access as a women very well to get behind many of the local customs particularly in Niger But then I nearly threw it at the wall when she got to Timbuktu and decided something along the lines of like me Timbuktu didn t need to be burdened by its history so I m not to describe any of the historical bits beyond the bus station I actually sworeA shame a good book in here in some externally ocused chapters the writing was much higher uality But to much me and not enough them In the would you have a pint wiht them travel writer uestion probably not although if she brought her husband and so talked to him instead of about him she d have some great anecdotesApproach with caution This is a travel memoir of an educated intelligent American mid 30 s emale journalist who is married to a Frenchman with whom she lives in a Parisian apartment It is a Paris that she describes as being constantly rainy and always grey She hates her job which does sound a nightmare and she is unsettled in her marriage about the uture possibility of motherhood and in where she lives She seems to dislike the French or no other reason it seems than they are so Gallic and French To address all this unhappiness and uncertainty she seeks to regain a sense of her own self and the adventurous life she had before marriage through off piste travel in Saharan Africa As one might expect Mindful Living with Aspergers Syndrome from a journalist she writes well but very soon her personality began to grate on me by saying one thing as a lofty aim but then doing the opposite As an example she states early on that she wants to seek out and enjoy the company of African Muslim women but then spends most of her time in Mauritania with a Venezuelan male doctor She initiallyound Mauritania breathtaking but uickly seemed to tire of its people particularly the simple lives of the women She seemed much happier in Mali though she is eventually disappointed by Timbuktu but then after returning home to Paris and deciding to have a baby she abruptly decides she must return to Africa when 4 months pregnant In Niger she inds the heat overpowering mostly due to her condition and thus spends much of her time with a group of affluent women who have the luxury of effective air conditioning She eventually tears herself away rom these women after a bizarre beauty exhibition and so at the end of her Nigerien trip she talks of visiting the Great Mosue of Zinder but then completely glosses over three weeks of what she describes as unforgettable adventure Some of what she describes of her travels is ascinating The coastal wind and cliffs of Western Sahara In Mauritania the male adoration of the obese emale Space Kid form the continued presence of slavery and the abundance of ancient Islamic texts thatamilies pass on Circumstantial Evidence: Death, Life, and Justice in a Southern Town from generation to generation The market in Bamako Mali though this is somewhat spoilt by her musing on why people have children and then when getting measuredor some traditional Malian dresses Also describing the beauty of the River Niger when out in the countryside and the sense of peace when listening to women in Niger gently singing verses rom the Koran So as you can see there were plenty of things to keep me reading but the overarching impression I was left with was not of the people and the beauty and the harsh nature of life in Saharan Africa but rather of a selfish and self indulgent affluent western woman who moans too much about her lot in life a life that countless millions might envy not only in the poverty stricken countries she was travelling through but all around the world Full of ennui after deciding that her ormer exciting life as a nomadic journalist which had been Every Drop for Sale: Our Desperate Battle Over Water full of travel and adventure has been exchangedor one that is a dull boring and stressful 9 to 5 rut spent amongst the bourgeois of Paris writer Nina Sovich decides to shake things up by traveling through Western Africa Down We Go: Living Into the Wild Ways of Jesus for some serious solitude and introspection Feeling stagnant and suffocated living in Paris with a kind supportive and tolerant husband daunted by the prospect of becoming a mother inspired by pioneeringemale explorers of Africa Mary. Her Unwittingly she had Reach for the Rainbow: Advanced Healing for Survivors of Sexual Abuse followed life’s script and now she needed to cast it outInspired byemale explorers like Mary Kingsley who explored Gabon’s jungle in the 1890s and Karen Blixen who ran a Troubled Waters farm in Kenya during World War I Sovich packed her bags and hopped on the next plane to Africa in search of adventureTo the Moon and Timbuktu takes readers on aast paced trek through We. What do you do when your life seems unfulfilling and staid and wanderlust inhabits your coreIf you are Nina Sovich you plan a cross Africa trip in an effort to drive your restlessness out and let you settle down in grey ParisAs she tells it Sovich picked Timbuktu as her ultimate destination because it seemed tangible a place she had heard of but was ar off the beaten path I m not sure she is ever really sure what she s looking or some kind of closure or a next step or something undefinable I alsoConvincingly To Life She Uses
am guilty of romanticizing Timbuktu I suppose I came to Timbuktu orguilty of romanticizing Timbuktu I suppose I came to Timbuktu or name and not I too am burdening the town I am bringing my baggage to this sunbaked END OF THE ROAD TOWN AND of the road town and it to provide beauty and meaning I am asking it to be something it is not page 218 I remember thinking in Paris that I would pour Africa into me like some kind of magic elixir Then I would be seen Then I would exist I seem now like a naive woman who thought a place or even beauty could make her whole page 220Whatever it is her irst attempt is a uasi ailure perhaps due to lack of planning or unrelenting dissatisfaction an I haven t ound it yet or that romanticism clashing with reality She tries again and though the second try goes better she perhaps predictably cannot simply return home and be happy Maybe I just miss Africa I sayMaybe he says looking at me steadily Though it is possible you are confusing two different issues page 246By the end of the book Sovich seems if not happy with her lot entirely grounded content to move Owls: Birds of the Night forward and accept her wanderlust as a part of her that may not ever entirely be satisfied She is neither broken nor triumphant but she has grown and or less come out ahead Reading about Africa travel women noniction Seemed my most enjoyable genre Not sure if this measures up to what I expected Author is ambivalent over so many different things A bit Bon Bon Voyage (A Carolyn Blue Culinary Mystery, foolhardy IMHO traveling to remote parts of the African continent alone while pregnant She wasollowing the path of some early Bon Bon Voyage female travelers eg Mary Kingsley There is a bibliography whicheeds my need or where to read of those earlier pioneer women in Africa I cannot remember why exactly I ordered this book and added it to my reading list but I am sure it has something to do with Timbuktu I have always been ascinated with this dreamy African city whose history and culture is just as deep rich and heavy as the weight of its name on our tongues I loved it or its mouth illing name I even once said I would call my own daughter Timbuktu It is only when the author Nina Sovich started describing her own obsession with Timbuktu that I started to realize that there might be in common between myself and her Henceforth I related to her in some odd and various thingsIn the irst pages of To the Moon and Timbuktu it gave me the impression that it is just another self indulgent Eat Pray Love book about a White Woman going on a soul journey in Africa but I was wrong Nina Sovich memoir on solitary woman travel was differentThis book is about Nina s journey both inwards and outward she was brutally honest in describing her own inner demons and how her soul cannot ind peace in the comfortable and domesticated Parisian life with her French husbandYet when she describes her journey through the Sahara of West Africa giving an eye opening appealing and detailed account of an area that is often ignored you can t help but keep reading Her travels enchanted me how she speaks of the coastal wind and cliffs of Western Sahara About the male adoration of the obese A Look Over My Shoulder: A Life in the Central Intelligence Agency femaleorm and the continued presence of slavery and the abundance of ancient Islamic texts that amilies pass on rom generation to generation in Mauritania The market in Bamako Mali and the traditional Malian dresses And Ravishing Ruby finally how she poetically describes the beauty of the River Niger and the sense of peace when listening to women or children gently reciting versesrom the uranThe book is a combination of travelogue memoir and psychological analysis It is not only about her adventurous and hazardous travels through West Africa but it is also and mainly about women s need to make it on their own to ind their own strength and learn the hard way how to make tough decisions and stand by those decisionsNiva Sovich writes beautifully and accurately You can almost eel the heat of the Malian summer sun smell the scent of the African rains and taste the morning herbal Mauritanian tea All through the time I am reading her book all I can think and dream about is traveling through Africa I ound this uite exasperating in places Sovich is a perceptive and talented writer with an excellent ear or relaying conversations However this book is as much her own journey of self discovery as travel writing and Old Yeller frankly I wasar less interested in her internal monologues than her des. Nina Sovich had always yearned Flying by the Seat of My Pants: Flight Attendant Adventures on a Wing and a Prayer for adventures inaraway places; she imagined herself leading the life of a solitary traveler Yet at the age of thirty Lincoln: An Illustrated Biography four sheound herself married and contemplating motherhood Catching her reflection in a window spotted with Paris rain she no longer saw the earless woman who spent her youth travelling in Cairo Lahore and the West Bank staring back at.