Penelope Sparrow, a 28-year-old dancer, has spent her entire life perfecting her body to meet directors’ crushing expectations. But when she wakes up in a Philadelphia hospital unable to move, she can’t even remember the events leading up to the accident: a near-fatal fall down 14 stories. With a second chance at life, Penny must come to terms with a body that has betrayed her, as she tries to discover what happened that night.
Written by a former dancer, this is a masterful portrayal of a young woman trying to understand her own past and begin again, beautifully expressing the language of dance and broken dreams.
What a beautiful book. I raced through this in a day, both because I wanted to find out what happened but also because the pages just compelled me along. Highly recommended.
Synopsis as taken from Goodreads.com:
When Elle’s father, a single parent and a big shot in corporate insurance, moves her to yet another boarding school for senior year, Elle is disgusted when nothing changes. Her night terrors don’t go away, and, soon, despite her father’s caring calls and visits, Elle starts to believe she’s losing her mind. She knows she’s being followed; a ribbon is tied around her doorknob, and there are those cigarette butts that keep turning up on the doormat, in violation of a strict smoking ban on campus. Then there’s Bryan, an intriguing boy Elle meets at a flea market and later finds out is a student at her school. Yet on campus, he pretends he doesn’t recognize her – until the day he divulges just how much danger she’s in. In her search for an answer to all the madness, Elle unravels the truth about her dad’s real identity, why someone has lied to her all her life, and the terrifying truth that she may be the only one who can save her from the one who’s following her now.
If you’re a fan of movies like THE BODYGUARD, you’d probably enjoy this book. I certainly read faster during the second half of the book, because I needed to know exactly what was going to happen. A fun read for sure; if you can get past the first part of the book – which seems a tad mismatched at first, but give it a chance because it all comes together in the end…. or was I just ‘deceived’?
One Gift, Three Rules, and a Life-Changing Journey Around the World
After Kim and her husband decide to quit their jobs to travel around the world, they’re given a yellow envelope containing a check and instructions to give the money away. The only three rules for the envelope: Don’t overthink it; share your experiences; don’t feel pressured to give it all away.
The story takes us through South America, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam – The concept of the yellow envelope is very simple: It shows on more than one occasion that sometimes the people who have the least are the most likely to give the most and ways of lives we may look down our nose at, other people are content and happy with.
A must-read for anyone who loves to live vicariously through other travelers’ stories.
One of my favorite quotes from this book “At the end of the day, the money itself is just paper. What gives the whole experience meaning are the thoughts, emotions, and feelings that come with giving the money away in ways that make you smile and make your heart sing.”
“A riveting memoir and a fascinating investigation of the history, uses, and controversies behind lithium, an essential medication for millions of people struggling with bipolar disorder.”
There are few autobiographies about mental illness that are as frank and raw as Mental, by Jaime Lowe…. I found the author’s honesty about the disease refreshing and the way the book is written, makes for fantastic awareness in hopes of an end to the stigma that surrounds mental illness.
A story of incidental derangement, as well as the stability found while on lithium. The author wrestles with questions of identity: Who is she, without the mania? Where does her personality end, and the condition begin? It’s powerful material, but told with a sarcastic humor that keeps things grounded…. Informative, heartbreaking, powerful, humorous read – I have nothing but praise for this book!
A Cook’s Travels Through Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, and Kurdistan
Following up on Burma,
her stunningly well-received exploration of another fascinating cultural crossroads, Duguid introduces us to the next place we want to visit with recipes for food we can’t wait to make, and with tales that are memorable and moving. In the way that the Mediterranean has a common palate, so too do these nations: one centered on a love for the fresh and the green (beginning with the piles of fresh herbs that accompany every dish with abandon) and also the tart, as revealed in the ingenious use of sour plums, sour cherries, pomegranates, and limes. There are the delectable filled dumplings, flatbreads, and stuffed vegetables; plus gorgeous Persian rice dishes, grilled meats, and skewered kebabs. There are fresh cheeses, sparkly salads, spice blends, and spectacular sauces based on walnuts ground to a paste.
Taste of Persia is an adventure of discovery—not only of a fascinating region, rich with history and variety, but of a wealth of culinary traditions and innovations as well.