Diapers, tantrums, and French bureaucracy–the crazy life of an American mom in Paris. Former party girl Vicki trades wine bottles for baby bottles, as this sassy mommy of two navigates the beautiful, yet infuriating, city of Paris. How does she steer a stroller around piles of dog poop? Or find time for French administration between breastfeeding and business meetings? And will she ever lose the baby weight with croissants staring at her from every street corner? This hilarious memoir will have you laughing, crying, and wiping up drool right alongside Vicki as she and her ever-patient French husband raise two children in the City of Light.
In the nineties racial tension soared in Long Beach, California after the Rodney King riots. A young teacher named Erin Gruell knew that going into her job at Wilson High School, but she still wasn’t totally prepared. Not only did the students judge each other by race, but the teachers did as well. They would stereotype and discriminate against their own students because of race and wealth. Also, there was a status quo at Wilson High School among the teachers. New teachers didn’t get to stay with their classes for four years, nor were they allowed to organize field trips. But Erin was willing to disrupt the status quo, give up her nights, and even work two extra jobs if it meant helping her students in Room 204. Together she and 150 students made a book compiled of journal entries that told their stories during all four years of high school. A lot of stories are moving, and many tragic. Several of these students went through hell and for one reason or another ended up in the “dumb” class. But they ended up proving everyone wrong, though, including themselves. This was a very powerful book and is definitely a must-read for everybody. It’s hard to believe some of the things the students went through, and it’s amazing they were able to do so much, even getting the audience of the Secretary of Education and going to Anne Frank’s house. I think everyone should read this book because it has such a powerful message, and is extremely well written. Make sure you order it from your local bookstore: IndieBound
I Am Malala is the true story of a teenage advocate for education. She was shot by the Taliban because she believed everyone should have the right to education, and not just men. Now she and her family live in Birmingham, England where they continue to fight for education and wait until they can go back to their home in Pakistan.
This is an outstanding book. There is no other way to say it. Malala is a fantastic writer with a powerful message and story. As I was reading, I realized I’m pretty ignorant myself. I was surprised by how normal she and her friends are, despite the violence in their neighborhood. She likes the TV show Ugly Betty and has read Twilight. Also, Malala shows that Islam is a peaceful religion although many have twisted the philosophies. I loved the book, and it might be the best book I’ve read all year. I think this is a book that everyone should read.
Here’s a link to the book as well as to the Malala Fund, a fund set up to raise money for girls’ and womens’ education.
Moving to a new country is very hard, but for Vicki Lesage, it’s (almost) a breeze. Aside from getting used to the stairs, the occasional perv on the subway, and all the French guys willing to give her a good time, she loves her new place in Paris. So much that she decided to make it her home. Confessions of a Paris Party Girl, is her memoir about how she survives (and loves) Paris.
I loved this book. It was so funny and held my attention, which is hard for some memoirs. There were several points when I laughed out loud, and other things I found insane and kind of cool (the French really only work for a small portion of the workday and socialize for the remainder?) This was a really good read, that was fairly quick, and funny. I’d recommend this book to anyone who wants to go to Paris, learn about Paris, or have a few laughs. It’s a really great book, and I can’t do it justice right now due to an incredibly bad head cold. But if you can, I’d suggest you read it.