Born and raised in the wilderness of Alaskan tundra, Seth Kantner, journalist and wildlife photographer, wanted to give the world a realistic account of this place as he knows it, opposed to the fantasized Northern lands described in novels and magazines. In this semi-autobiographic fiction, he gives us an exquisite and vivid depiction of life and… Continue reading Ordinary Wolves by Seth Kantner
A few weeks ago, China put an end to three decades of one-child policy, which prevented most urban families from having more than one child. All Chinese families will now be allowed two children. Maybe now is the moment to talk about the consequences of this unique family planning policy. Xinran has been researching on the effects it had on… Continue reading Buy Me the Sky: The Remarkable Truth of China’s One-Child Generations by Xinran
North Korea is a place that still seems hanging between reality and fiction for the rest of the world. But here Park Yeonmi, a defector as most refugees call themselves, shares with us her too real story of a survivor of a most perilous journey to escape from the Hermit Kingdom. It is not a tale… Continue reading In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl’s Journey to Freedom by Park Yeonmi
Most page-turners focus mainly on a gripping story, but this one really gives a lot to think about. The more I think about what I just read, the more I feel a whole book could be written only to explore what lies between its lines. It was a suggestion from a book club, and I… Continue reading The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson
After his death, Muhammad, the Prophet by whom the Quran had been revealed and who had by that time built a Muslim empire, left no son of his own, and no clear enough indications about who he wished to be his successor to guide and lead the Muslim community. Unsurprisingly, his closest friends and relatives begin to tear apart, latent divisions explode, and each protagonist tries to keep the unity of the community, while protecting his or her own interests. All these disputes will lead to an irreversible split, and to an increasing manipulation of people’s faith, to a political use of religion.