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|Louisa by Simone Zelitch (Hungary 199193) published by G.P. Putnams Sons on September 4th has received Starred * reviews from both Kirkus Reviews and Publishers Weekly and special notice from Inside.com, the powerful new media website. The novel, a reinterpretation of the Biblical tale of Ruth, who follows her destitute Israelite mother-in-law, Naomi, to her homeland and adopts her religion. Lauded by Kirkus Reviews as superb . . . mature and absorbing, the novel tells the story of a Holocaust survivor and her German daughter-in-law, bound together by their experience in Hungary under the Nazis during World War II. Publishers Weekly says that Zelitch transcends historical events with a provocative depiction of the enduring mysteries of human relationships.
Inside.com drew attention, in early September, to the new fall books, and made note that while Simone Zelitch did not receive a hefty advance for her Louisa, the novel nevertheless has its passionate believers.
Louisa is also currently one of the featured books at Overbooked.org a web site for ravenous readers offering information about new and notable fiction of all types.
|Facing the Congo by Jeffrey Tayler (Morocco 198890; PC/Staff Uzbekistan 199293) will be published in October by Ruminator Books. Tayler is the author of Siberian Dawn: A Journey Across the New Russia. He writes for such publications as Condé Nast Traveler, Spin, Harpers, and Atlantic Monthly, and he is a regular commentator on NPRs All Things Considered. Two of Taylers travel essays were selected by Bill Bryson for the 2000 inaugural edition of The Best American Travel Writing.|
|In a surprise announcement 35 years ago this month, the president of the United States gave young Americans a few hours at most to make one of the biggest decisions of their lives: Get to the altar by midnight or risk dying in Vietnam. What happened next is detailed by Thurston Clarke (Tunisia 1968) in the September issue of George magazine.|
|A new website, 12degrees.com, which offers travelers consultations for a fee with guidebook authors and in-country specialists, features three RPCVs. Among the authors who will design a custom overseas vacation for you: For the Caribbean, there is Karl Luntta (Botswana 197880), who has written travel books on Jamaica and the Lesser Antilles; and Turkeys guide is Tom Brosnahan, (Turkey 196770), who has written on his country-of-service for Arthur Frommers popular guide books and the Lonely Planet guide book on Turkey (and is featured in our interview this issue). Among the in-country specialists who make all reservations, and arrangements for travelers, is Dudley Parkinson (Cameroon 197678) who worked for seven years in West Africa and is a West Africa specialist for 12degrees.|
|Vanity Fair has Senior Correspondent Maureen Orths (Colombia 1964-66) piece on Vladimir Putin, Russias new president in the October issue.|
|Copies of Endless Enemies: The Making of an Unfriencly World: How America's Worldwide Interventions Destroy Democracy and Free Enterprise and Defeat Our Own Best Interests are available at Bibliofind.com for prices ranging from $5.00 to $30.00.||The late journalist, Jonathan Kwitny (Nigeria 196466) is acknowledged by Barbara Kingsolver in her Authors Note to the bestseller The Poisonwood Bible as her primary source:
Most profoundly helpful among [my sources] was Jonathan Kwithnys description of Zaires postcolonial history, in his excellent book, Endless Enemies, which gave shape to my passion to write a novel on the same subject. I returned continually to that account for the big picture and countless small insights.
|In January, Karl Luntta (Botswana 197780) had a short story entitled Cold On Ice in Northeast Corridor, published by Beaver College in Pennsylvania. He also had novel excerpt called Sugar published in the December 1999 issue of North Atlantic Review. The novel, to be published by Curbstone Press in 2001, is as yet untitled.|