June Books Checked Out at A Traveler's Library

by pen4hire /
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Jul 10, 2009 / 0 comments

People checked out a variety of books in June at A Traveler's Library

I Live in Tokyo by Mari Takabayashi     (Japan)

The Way We Do It in Japan by Geneva Cobb (Japan)

Hachiko: The True Story of a Loyal Dog by Pamela S.
Turner (Japan)

A Trance After Breakfast by Alan Cheuse (Various places)

Various articles on the New Acropolis Museum in Athens

Childe Harold by Lord Byron (Greece)


When I was just a tiny girl, I discovered a book in my grandmother’s house that affected the rest of my life. Of course I did not know that at the time.  The children’s book held illustrations of children from different lands in their native costumes and in exotic settings. Of course to a six-year-old who lives in a town of 900 in Ohio, almost everything is exotic.


I now realize that the seeds of a life-long traveler who is curious about other cultures were planted when I paged through that colorful book.  Consequently, I believe that an essential part of children’s reading consists of books about other lands and other cultures.


Japan for Children

So of course I was very pleased with the popularity and lively discussion of A Traveler’s Library’s guest post on books to help children adjust to Japan Christine Gross-Loh writes from experience since she lives part time in Japan with her small children. She introduces us to three children’s books that helped her kids adjust, and would help explain Japan’s culture to travelers or stay-at-homes.

I Live in Tokyo by Mari Takabayashi focuses on holidays and festivals.

The Way We Do It In Japan by Geneva Cobb, introduces
every day life, and prepares Christine’s kids for what school will be like.


Hachiko: The True Story of a Loyal Dog by Pamela S. Turner tells a story familiar to all Japanese children and emphasizes a Japanese value.


A Collection of Essays and Articles

The second popular post could not be more different than the first. (Don’t you go to a library because of the variety available?)  A new book, A Trance After Breakfast by Alan Cheuse, book reviewer on NPR compiles essays and articles Cheuse has written, some on travel and some vaguely travel related. I found the most fascinating to be long articles on life along the U.S.-Mexican Border and in the border town of Tijuana. The book wanders from the breezy style of travel magazine articles to the thought-filled writing in the border pieces, but all are well crafted. I also like a section in which he talks about books he read for a trip to Indonesia, and I did a separate post on that subject the following day.

Celebrating Ancient Greece

Dearest to my heart, and also popular, I did a week of posts about Greece in honor of the opening of the New Acropolis Museum.  Last summer I toured the British Museum’s
collection of Parthenon statues and 48 hours later had a sneak preview of the
Acropolis Museum.  That experience solidified my activist streak when it comes to the importance of restoring all of the existing statues to Athens. The new Museum in Athens is stunning, and readers apparently agreed, because they flocked to this post which featured a lengthy quote by Christopher Hitchens writing in Vanity Fair and referrals to several other articles on the Internet about the Museum and the controversy.

While all of the Greek week articles attracted attention the second most popular Greek post surprised me. Who would have thought that in this day and age, quoting a lengthy passage from Lord Byron would draw an audience?  However a large crowd gathered to read excerpts from Childe Harold in the post title "Lord Byron speaks out on the Parthenon Marbles."

In July at A Traveler’s Library we have already introduced new books and a new movie, as well as talked about some old favorites (particularly celebrating American Independence Day).  Next week a guest writer will take us to Finland, celebrate Bastille Day, Christine Gros-Loh looks at a grown-up's book about Japan and I peruse some summer reading lists.  I’m reading Spain and
India and have my eye on Mark Twain writing about the American West.  What about you?

See you next month when I reveal what readers were most interested in during the month of July at A Traveler's Library.