domenica, luglio 31, 2016

Listen like a dog - And Make Your Mark on the World - by Jeff Lazarus

Jeff Lazarus has written a real solid self-help book: Listen like a dog -  And Make Your Mark on the World - cover83167-medium published by HCI Books.
True and enjoyable, why this necessity of putting into words something so curious as the title is? Our new incapacity of listening other people. Our lack of attention for the other human being.

And so the idea inspired by Jeff Lazarus's dog: our dogs and their less, complicated and much more genuine world an example for everyone.

After all a dog is this: immense love for the owner, participation of all the joys and sadness of a family, they donate a lot of fun and the possibility of developing great and healthy relationship and connections with them.


Lazarus starts to affirming that, yes, OK it's true, man is a social animal as we all know, but during these last 20 years, with the boom of the net, and with the advent of many other ways for communicating virtually, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsup, we have lost the capacity of listening and understanding other people.
We are social, but in a different way from the past.

Our interactions deteriorated a lot.
Many people just don't have time for other people. There is virtual life that can be best and can be used as a substitute of normal one.

Problem is that there are less real friends now than not 20 years ago and a deterioration of friendship with the arrival of virtual communications. Possible?  We have many friends on FB or in other social network and there is more solitude in general.

Jeff Lazarus is not tender with this new trend, where communication, normal one, "de visu", as Latin would say  drastically reduced, the use also of the phone sometimes gone thanks to other modality of communication. Adults, teenagers born during the boom of the net, everyone involved in the changes created by the born of this new Net Age.

Once, Lazarus has a dog, he started to talk to him. Not a normal talk, but a long long long conversation about life, his problems, what was going on in his life and he discovered, surprisingly, that the dog paid attention to him in a modality absolutely unknown to most of the people with which he speaks with everyday.
A dog is interested at our life, says Lazarus, and we should always take example by this creature. He doesn't judge us, he accepts us for who we are, he loves the way we are. He doesn't want anyone else apart us and he is always available for listening with genuine interest. He is emphatic. A dog knows the meaning of tragedies and feel joys, happiness and unhappiness of a family.

Devoted to the owner, a dog has the capacity of eye contact, more rare between humans.

A dog, is the answer and the example we should all follow for trying to re-establish proper communications.

Through various and diversified examples people will learn again to be socials. A healthy socialization.

The author encourages everyone at being open to new people. At "sniffing" as dogs do,  new people. Well, not literally. I mean: not as little Doc. Dolittle did in the movie, for specifying.

But...Talking with strangers is important. In supermarket, in public places, because we can open new doors at other fantastic souls although for just few minutes and this one is an enrichment.

The main problem of communication?
We don't want to listen anymore, complains the author. We interrupt people, we want to have always the last word, and we don't give importance to other people as for example a dog does.

It's a beautiful human and animal trip this one of Jeff Lazarus that will bring you through various modality of behavior, human and...canine comparing all the time the various differences between  humans and canines and what it is best for us to copy from a dog's behavior.

Jeff Lazarus thinks that we should return to be frank, honest. He says a lot has been lost.
It would be important to be who we are because as also added once Oscar Wilde, everyone else is taken.

And first of all let's try to re-discover humanity, silence,  - dogs love silence and to them it's not embarrassing as it is for humans - patience, so that you can listen and understand, appreciating what the other person is saying. Every human being is a gift donated to this world.

One of the main errors of our times is interrupting continuously the person with which we are talking with.

A very interesting chapter the power of words.
Our doggie friend can be helpful also with our routine. Dogs have a proper routine, man constantly unsatisfied. Wherever we are we would love to be somewhere else but changing is difficult also in the little daily situations taken in consideration by Lazarus. A lot of suggestions and thoughts for trying to improve our behavior.

Every chapter  with the example of famous TV series dog, like Rin Tin Tin, Lassie, or other famous dogs that said a lot as examples for local communities and owners. 

The author mentions a line from my favorite doggy book:

So much language is unspoken.
So much of language is comprised of looks and gestures and sounds that are not words. People are ignorant of the vast complexity of their own communication

(from The art of racing in the rain by Garth Stein).

Dogs are generous animals. They help us to stay happy, balanced, they donate joy and happiness,dogs can guide people to find their way.
And not just practically. When we are sad and unhappy they are of great comfort.

A great advice giving by the author is not to change a dog constricting him to become a sorta of semi-human creature, but to start, considering the good qualities of a dog, to be an imitation of him, because dogs can let us change the perception of our reality and bettering our behavior, becoming better people.

Great book, sometimes I found repetition of concepts here and there, but maybe it's better because it gives more force at the book and ideas remains more and I would have preferred a more colored cover, (the dog is fantastic, the grey put down), for the rest go for it with the certainty of buying a very good book! It can be  a great good gift if you know someone in love for dogs or someone in search of inspiration for a real change.
A dog can help! :-)

Thanks to Netgalley for this book!


Anna Maria Polidori




sabato, luglio 30, 2016

Interview with the author of The Lonely Teddy Bear, Chelsea Radojcic


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 "The Lonely Teddy Bear? A story of Ying and Yang" assures the sunny author, Chelsea Radojcic




DISCLAIMER: IF YOU CONTINUE TO READ, READER, REMEMBER THAT THERE ARE VARIOUS SPOILERS IN THIS INTERVIEW. IF YOU DON'T WANT TO RUIN THE SURPRISE, BEFORE TO READ THE INTERVIEW, PLEASE BUY The Lonely Teddy Bear and READ IT!!!





I fall in love for The Lonely Teddy Bear. I had just finished to review the book about the biography of Louisa May Alcott and I found, while I started to read Chelsea Radojcic's m_P7190745 (549x640) tale another great reading. Bucolic world, a great narration, clear, no boring times, captivating.

Substantially there is to say that the element: surprise in this book plays a great role.
It's a book at high emotive impact and you will "feel", profoundly feel the story, trust me. 

So, for this reason I contacted the author for asking her something more about the creation of this book.

I discovered a very nice, sunny, young and enthusiastic  author, and this one is our Q&A

This interview this time via e-mail.




Where were you born and what kind of studies did you attend?

I was born in Volusia County Florida and attended Allied School College where I studied in the field of Pharmacy. I have no formal training in writing, only practice since childhood.



When did you discover your passion for writing?

I have loved reading and writing books since I was five years old, and I've loved telling stories since I was even younger than that.
I've known since I was five years old that when I grew up I wanted to become a professional writer and share my stories with other people.
I have always wanted to have my books published.
I love writing most all genres, a little bit of everything. I specialize in writing children's stories, although I have only had one children's book published as of yet, Virginia Stars in a School Play.
That book is VERY different from this one.
I am very passionate about poetry and enjoy a good suspenseful thriller. I don't enjoy gory stories however, which is why although some of my story The Lonely Teddy Bear contains graphic plot twists, I did not go into great detail...
I do not have the stomach for graphic descriptions. Not going into too much detail can also be good sometimes because that gives the reader his or hers own imaginations limit to work with.

Your family was a creative one with other writers?

My parents had two children, myself and my younger sister, Isabella. I was born the writer, and Isabella was born the artist.
She is actually my partner in Children's books, she creates my Illustrations.  I do not have any other writers in my immediate family, however, my father used to tell me many different stories as a child.

When did you start to write?

I started writing at the age of 5, possibly sooner, but that is the earliest that I clearly remember. I would write stories all the time and staple them together and then put stickers all over the front like a book cover.
I always put the month/date on my work as well as my name next to the words "written by" or "author."


Who are your favorite authors?


Where do I begin?
Dean Koontz, Stephen King, Neil Shusterman, Alice Hoffman, Stephanie Meyers, Edgar Allen Poe, Lois Lowry, James Patterson, William Joyce, Shel Silverstien, Suzanne Collins, Kate DiCamillo, Scott Westerfeld, Barbara Brooks Wallace, and the list goes on and on and on...


Why did you think at the Lonely Teddy Bear as at this peculiar human being?


As crazy as it may seem, this story was originally intended to be a Children's book.

I started it out as a book about a sweet teddy bear who was so sad and lonely in his yellow house and I had intended to make him leave his home in search of adventure.
It was meant to be innocent with good morals and a happy ending.
I actually envisioned the story being along the lines of the sweet tale of The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo.
However, upon reading the opening paragraphs to my husband and best friend, they both thought it would make a great thriller.
I at first said, "NO! This is a supposed to be a sweet book about a teddy bear," but after reading it again, I realized its mad potential to be a brilliant book unlike any other that I have ever read. I wanted this book to catch it's reader by surprise, and to make them think, truly think.
I wanted this book to have depth and just a twist of darkness.
As people, we sometimes tend to have a small craving for that dark twist... and so often in books, the bad guy doesn't get away.
But what if, we made a story about a seemingly charming and charismatic sweet teddy bear who is kind, deep, caring... and then have the reader come to love him... by the end of the story, no matter how crazy and horrible that character may truly be, part of us wants to root for him, part of us wants to see that happily ever after of the two "bad characters."
There was something so satisfying about ending the story on this "happily ever-after" note. Originally, I was going to end the story differently.
I was going to have Janie and Jink die in a fire. Janie would discover the truth about Jink and try to abandon him again, this time of her own initiative, but Jink would not be able to handle losing her again, so he would start a fire, and keep her locked away close to him, so that they could burn together, at last able stay together for always.
I like the way I truly ended the story better though... it leaves you feeling strangely satisfied.



What kind of fascination did you find in Jink and Janie? The power of their love?


The love Jink and Janie share is something that only a good story can truly capture.
Their love is unconditional and unbreakable.
Throughout their entire lives, they never let that love cool or fade.
They were in a way, "one" you could say...
Ying and Yang, never whole without the other piece.
Their lives were lived in a constant state of emptiness without one another.
If you get into the details of their personality types and understand their mental disorders, then it becomes even more impressive that they remain strong and loyal to each other.
Jinks motive for killing are different than Janie's. Jinks is out of care... if you notice throughout the story, Jink only kills people who he connects with on an emotional level. He respects all of the people he kills. This is evident by the way that he treats them.
For example: Amber's Death.
Jink poisons Amber and she dies in her sleep. Once she dies, he neatly tucks her into bed. He is gentle with her. Jinks reasons for killing are complicated. As years pass in the yellow house, something snaps inside his brain. Once that happens, he changes. He had never previously killed before...
Jink kills partially too because he wants for those people to be "at peace."
His reason for killing the baby was because he found it to be so beautiful.
He wanted to capture that beauty, so that it could never be changed.
Also, the baby is symbolic. Just as a child would cling to a teddy bear for comfort, a teddy bear would cling to a child. Which is why the child was then stuffed as a teddy bear would be.
This idea came from my husband, which at first I was quite appalled by, because it is a horrid concept. It truly is terrible if you think about it but it is undeniable poetic in a way.
A very dark way...
Then you have Janie.
She is an entirely different type of killer.
She kills out of vengeance and necessity.
She kills her parents because she is angry that they took her from Jink.
She kills the neighbor boy, simply because she needs an escape route and she knows that if she uses him to fake her murder, then she can truly be free to stay with Jink.
So really, her motives for killing have always been for Jink.
The character building behind The Lonely Teddy Bear had several inspirations; the notorious and charming killer and cannibal Hannibal Lecter created by Thomas Harris- Jink reminds me in many ways of him in his presence, his class and style, his manners, his grace and charisma, his smooth talking and his love for fine things.
Hannibal Lecter too had a woman he loved. Of course his love for her was different and in a more romantic way, but their love too was very unusual and hard to describe. I remember the first time I discovered the story of Hannibal, and of course it was awful but strangely romantic and I was fascinated by the love that he had for Clarice. Another inspiration was from the story of Arsenic and Old Lace, based off of Joseph Kesselring's play which of course was then adapted into the lovable black and white film starring Cary Grant in the 1940's, which is how I first discovered the story. I thought of 'Arsenic and Old Lace' in the scene of Amber.
In a way, Jink too had the same motive and innocence in the killing... he  killed as an act of kindness, just as the two sweet old ladies in that story did. He felt such pity for Amber's sad story and past, such understanding to her pain and troubles, that he thought it a kindness to let her rest in peace.
My last inspiration was from Stephen Kings Secret Window/Secret Garden story in which you realize in the end of the story, the main character is a crazed killer who has mentally "snapped" after a traumatic incident prior, which causes him to become schizophrenic.
Of course, Jink is not schizophrenic, but the reader is equally as surprised that the story they were reading has suddenly shifted toward the end, and of course, they both have the satisfying ending of "the bad guy getting away with murder." It can be unsettling in a way, to think they can walk away unscathed, but there is also something fun and dangerous about it too.

Can you please explain to me why the comparison with the teddy bear? I know what it is a teddy bear of course, but I want to know why you choose the teddy bear for describing someone as Jink is.


The teddy bear is a symbol: a symbol of comfort, a symbol of home. As children, particularly as little girls, which is why the connection to Janie as a little girl is so meaningful, we will have a teddy bear or doll that is our favorite.
 When we fall down and scrape our knee or when we are feeling sad, that teddy bear or doll is there, waiting to comfort us.
We hold it close and squeeze it tightly as our tears fall down, and something about just holding onto it gives us children a sense of calm.
We feel better, comforted, loved by it.
Sometimes, as children, those connections or attachments to dolls or teddy bears can be very strong. Of course, as adults, we understand a toy could never love us back and we no longer need that comfort of toys and of course we do not have those strong attachments to them either.
In this particular story though, it's interesting because that connection for Janie and Jink never fades as time goes by.
It is possible that because of Janie's young age coupled with the trauma of the war, the trauma of the moving away, and the loss of her beloved teddy bear and best friend all at once has caused something inside Janie to become stuck in time, and she is never able to truly move forward from that moment.
So as years pass by, she remains stuck in that fragile childlike state, in which she has such a strong emotional attachment to Jink that she cannot break it.
That attachment manifests itself into a need, something that she can no longer function or exist without.

According to you, what can move people as these ones to act in such perverse ways? Because in this case we don't speak of killing a person pretty quickly. There is a sort of ritual with body dismembered and put in the garden...


This story is merely fictional, and quite unusual even for a fictional tale.
In reality, I have spent a lot of time studying the mind, things such as psychopaths, schizophrenia, the criminally insane and otherwise.
There are many different reasons. In this story, as mentioned before, their reasons for killing are different.
Janie feels sorry for Jonas, but he has gotten too close to the truth, and nothing is more important to her than Jink. If something gets in the way, it must be removed.
She is clever too, she knows how to cover her tracks.
As far as "dismembering..." the story does say "they began to cut" however, it was vague on purpose, allowing the readers imagination to do the work.
The reasoning behind it, is completely to the readers opinion.
If I hypothetically speaking, were to have a particular symbolism in my own mind behind this, I would keep it secret, because my goal is to entertain and engage my readers... and isn't it most fun when we get to help create the story ourselves? I have always enjoyed reading books that left some work for the reader...

Who was your favorite character of this book?

I really love all of my characters, even the ones who did not last long.
I love Sam's trust and kindness... He is so open minded and generous with other people, even though he himself has been through so many difficult things.
I love Amber, if for no other reason, she is wounded and yet strong and determined to continue going forward.
I would have to say though, that Jink is truly my favorite character, crazy and all. He is so charming and just has a soothing proper way about him. I love his manners, his bow tie, his fondness of chai tea, and his intense love for Janie. He is so loyal to her, and his love is boundless and without limits. He is truly unwavering in loyalty.

When did you decide to write the story of Jink and Janie? Did you read in the past stories like these ones?

I wrote Jink and Janie's story in the dark part of the month of September in 2015. I wrote the entire book in 4 days. I barely slept or ate in those four days. I sat day and night staring at my computer, occasionally getting up for the restroom or to stretch. I then edited tirelessly after the book was complete and assigned others to edit what I had already edited. Then, I had it edited by a professional editor for the final cut.



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I can honestly say, I have never heard of or read a story such as the one of Jink and Janie. The closest I can think of, are the three story inspirations I listed above in this interview, but none of them were quite like this story. I give my compliments to the overactive imagination on this one.



I read that the book is having a wonderful success. Did you expect it?


I do not yet have many reviews or sales on 'The Lonely Teddy Bear' as it is still a very new book and I am still a very new Author.
Also, this is a self published book, which can be harder to get the word spread.
However, the feedback I have gotten so far has been a tremendous inspiration and encouragement to my writing.
I am pleasantly surprised at how well it has been received by my readers.
I was very nervous when I posted this book, nervous at how people would see it, and wondered will people enjoy the story?
I went through a brief moment of doubt, just recently.
I felt very discouraged... like perhaps I was not a good writer and should give up, but like always, regardless of whatever doubts I have, I was too stubborn to quit.
Fortunately, that feeling was very brief and soon I was motivated once again.
I definitely do not feel like I am "great," in the eyes of others and am grateful for "decent," because honestly, I write because I love to write, and that is what truly matters, that is what is important. 

 Chelsea is more than sure of it: 

When you LOVE doing something, that is worth your time and effort, it is worth working hard for.  
Being determined to not give up and to continue going, despite what other people think, whether good or bad, is very important.

Are you writing another novel?

I am writing two novels right now... thanks to the inspiration I have received from a few very kind words and interested readers.

Surprise, surprise, if you loved The Lonely Teddy Bear maybe the story will continue...

Yes. Two more stories devoted to the re-telling of The Lonely Teddy Bear. These books will be from different perspectives. One from the life of Janie, and one from the life of the detective, Jonas.

Apart writing which other hobbies have you got?

I love photography! m_P7190745 (549x640) Love, Love, Love. And of course, I love reading. I spend a lot of time with 2 my dogs, 2 cats, and my very wonderful and supportive husband. I like being outside, and I love being near the water more than nearly anything else in the world.

Have you never been to Italy? The eBook will be translated here?

I have never been to Italy, but I would love to visit. I am looking into getting my book translated and hoping to make it available in many different places, Italy being one of them.



Anna Maria Polidori





venerdì, luglio 29, 2016

C S Lewis - The man who created Narnia - by Michael Coren

C S Lewis - The man who created Narnia - by Michael Coren published in 1996 and re-published digitally by Endeavour Press in 2015 is not a long book, but surely has a lot and a lot of positive sides and I found it wonderful.

The book is concise, it goes right to the point, and it is absolutely pretty informative telling to you all the possible curiosities you want to discover about Lewis, maintaining a beautiful, vivid, strong and felt narration all the time. Who wrote this book loved Lewis and his books so badly and you can feel it.

65 pages in total, the biographer starts the story of Lewis from the beginning. Born in Belfast, little Clive Lewis enjoyed a lot his living in the city and rural countryside. A brother, various animals, he was surrounded by the love of his mother who encouraged him to read a lot. The character of his dad pretty nasty. Little Clive lost his mom at just 10 years for a long illness and sent to Britain for studying by his dad he didn't find great connections and a good environment but...It there there that he met God. Lewis was born protestant but he becalm catholic and he is still considered the most important christian author of the modern age.

During the first world war he met another young man Paddie Moore and his mom.  Close friends with  his family, later Lewis would have helped and kept in his house this lady til her natural death.

The house of Lewis opened to everyone and to the most diversified people.

As a teacher no one, looking at his physical aspect, pretty normal, would have said that this man was brilliant but when he started to speak people enchanted by his thoughts.

Many publications and books, also fantasy before the arrival of the Chronicles of Narnia.


Friends with Tolkien and other intellectuals, they loved to spend some time all together during the week at a pub for discussing of literature and other thematic.

Lewis hasn't met the biggest love of his life at 20 years, but after the publication of Narnia's books so when he was pretty mature. He received a special letter from the USA from a Narnia's fan and he started a correspondence with her. Her name: Joy.

It was a profound and intense feeling and Lewis would have always remembered this lady, his wife later, with great passion and love, and it was moving to read that after her departure although extremely catholic and positive at first he couldn't find anymore the old joy he felt when he was with her.

Touching, this one is a precious, very good book for sure, for all the estimators of Narnia and his poetic author.


I thank Endeavour Press for this ebook.


Anna Maria Polidori 

giovedì, luglio 28, 2016

Facehooked - How Facebook Affects Our Emotions, Relationships and Lives - Dr.Suzana E.Flores

Suzana E.Flores is a clinical psychologist and she wrote Facehooked published by Reputation Books for trying to let us understand how much social medias in particular Facebook changed our daily life.

All "hooked" by Facebook this one of Flores is  a shocking and at traits sad, but always interesting reportage on the mind and behavior altered thanks to Facebook. While I was reading the book I thanked Lord we still have dial-up in our corner of the world. If sometimes I complain, I see now all the positive sides  :-) ;-) 

Surely Facebook gives addiction. Surely Facebook is able to reduce the connections between real people, like also other social appls as whatsup. Facebook is attractive, and the Big Brother of the world. More than other virtual communities.

Yes because Twitter is for business and for people who wants to spread important messages. In general more adapted for communication and media.

Facebook is a beautiful virtual land where to spend time without anymore...privacy.

It is a strange phenomenon this one: if in real life we wouldn't never, never communicate certain things, from the most common to the most sensitive ones to strangers, once online every kind of inhibition is over, and we are the protagonists of a never ending show where we post this world and the other, where we comment, where we share also sensitive topics sometimes with people we haven't never met and that surely will be incredibly good people but that they can be also potentially dangerous.

Facebook has also created for people passed away the possibility of keeping alive their FB page...

13 millions of people tells the author never changed the privacy of Facebook although it's important to keep Facebook protected under many aspects in particular if we added complete strangers on our community.

The author analyzes then the various behavior people starts to adopt once online. They want to be more beauty, more stunning because comparison with models or actors, or other people and their beautiful estates, children etc, can be cause of frustration.
So they tend to Photoshop their life.

What it means? They alter their life for trying to be more beauty, more attracting, more interesting, more...everything.

The result? In general it's a failure when we project a different ideas of us, but we are online and so who cares?

Facebook and people. It's like if every person is suffering of a sort of schizophrenic problem. In real life they're controlled. Once online they're different ones with maybe sometimes different identities, created for the most diversified purposes, stealing friendship, love, informations. They create a different self for loving maybe themselves more than the real self. Who knows?

It's a dangerous place under many aspects, as also can be potentially,  good because you can post  pictures of our life for our distant friends, correspondents and connections and where to share your thoughts.

It's not all negative, but it's important to try to prevent the negativity that there is in this powerful social network.

At first it was Myspace. It's in that case a place dedicated mainly at people of the showbiz, where you can find bands,  actors, musicians, writers. It's a place for creative people with a different philosophy if compared to Facebook.

Then the arrival of Facebook. Facebook thanks to its scheme, a lot of games, an attractive interface, captured millions of people. People  started to share all their thoughts, pictures, publicly, commenting, and sharing their life. There are active users who love to sharing with others their life in a daily base thanks also at the new deviceS like smart phones and tablets and a simplified access to the virtual community.

The risks? Being used by many kind of people  that we add with simplicity although we don't know anything of them.

Plus, a powerful part of the book dedicated at the so-called Cyber-Native youngsters born and grown up with the internet, and these instruments and cyberbullysm.

As reported by the psychologist, youngster find less attracting to talk to real people than not playing or using their smart phone.

But same is for adults. There is not anymore peace during lunch or dinner. People, adults and teen-agers use constantly their smart phones.

Why this?

There is not a precise reason. After all in the past we brought a book at the doc's studio and while we were waiting we read. Now, same happens with smart phone but in a much more massive level and with more interactions. We didn't read during lunch or dinner. I did but I guess I was just a sporadic case.

Maybe it's a sort of refusal to speak and interact with people in that place, it can be a bar, it can be a cafe a social place.  The smart phone the best instrument for finding refuge in the "other world" in the virtual life, and where to escape and  find some peace, if virtual life means that. No stress. Or just, googling also while we lunch or we have dinner time gives us the possibility of searching while we talk with the rest of family of certain informations immediately. A writer, a place, a pic.

For certain people the net is a place where to cause messes of various genres and there are various kind of profiles portrayed by the psychologist and their modality for approaching people, "ruining" their own consideration for a little while.

Most of the people interviewed, some clients of the author focused on their massive problematic derived by the use and abuse of Facebook. Big dependence, great discussions, break up with their real partner, because partner thought that their girlfriends or wives talked with other men online or vice versa.

There was a story of a girl and boy. They chatted for 7 years, she Photoshopped her pics because she didn't like her body and when she met this boy deluded by the encounter.
Virtual life creates myths and different expectations. Maybe because there is not real life to live. Virtual life is more light.
You can send as a gift a virtual heart, a virtual kiss, a virtual dish of pasta, a virtual donuts without hug, without cooking or baking thanks to various game applications. You save time and you think that you are interested in the other human beings. Surely is true but... How much can be true without also a physical interaction?

There are also big misunderstanding.

A man caused a mess, because he saw his girlfriend close to a man. It was in a FB pic. He didn't know who this smiling man was and thinking maybe he could be a new lover of his girlfriend, he broke her PC, was violent with her, till he discovered that the guy was Mitt Romney, a republican candidate the lady was supporting.

Funny and comical isn't it true? Pity that there was violence in this episode.

A virtual community must be a place where we start to wisely interact with other ones and trying to carefully add new people.

It's all up to us, if we want to share thoughts, feelings, with others, or just we want to use e-mail for it.

Surely Facebook gives a stage, a place where to perform who we are or who we are not and this is what, mainly makes the difference. Each of us wants 15 minutes of fame and Facebook can gives us more than 15 minutes. An entire virtual life.

Wonderful book, because you will learn a lot about the big potentialities and damages caused by Facebook and our so-called virtual life.

Thanks to netgalley for this book!


Anna Maria Polidori

mercoledì, luglio 27, 2016

Tree Houses Reimagined - Luxurious Retreats for Tranquility and Play - by Blue Forest & E. Ashley Rooney

Who, when little didn't want a tree house? Freedom, a corner just for us, unavailable to everyone, where we could have put our own world? Books, journals, pictures? It was I remember one of my biggest desires and dreams. When I read in various children's books, mostly Americans of course, of tree houses I thought: "Oh, if I could have one..."


Trees houses with the time have continued to fascinate me for their peculiarity: they're not common houses.

When I noticed this book Tree Houses Reimagined - Luxurious Retreats for Tranquility and Play - written by Blue Forest & E. Ashley Rooney, by Schiffer Publishing Ltd I didn't hesitate a second and I asked to Netgalley to view, read and review it.

Oh, it is for sure a dreaming, relaxing, wonderful, special book.

It is a pleasure to me to suggest and warmly recommend you this book for a special occasion and as a precious gift to someone in love with the beauty of nature and these exclusive tree  houses taken in consideration.

Yes, because in this case dear reader, you mustn't imagine the old dear nice, but rudimental tree house of the past.
No: this ones are real luxuries estates, and I guess also very expensive, built in many places of the world, UK, Africa...

Sophisticated, plenty of fantasy, some of them, twenty-eight in total are inspired by fairy-tales, other by villages like Sleepy Hollow, other ones been built because someone requested them for creating yoga structures. Exclusive places where to find some relaxation dedicated to all that people who want to restore their soul and their body after a stressing year.

Some of these tree houses are simply like suspended between sky, water and trees. Shockingly beauty.

Published by Blue Forest & E. Ashley Rooney the book will be released this 28 September and it is a perfect gift for Christmas as well.


Anna Maria Polidori

lunedì, luglio 25, 2016

The Lonely Teddy Bear by Chelsea Radojcic

This remarkable book written by Chelsea Radojcic, The Lonely cover92860-medium Teddy Bear is about reality, our perception of reality and the real self.


What kind of reality and world do we choose for ourselves?

Who is a stranger? Or better: who can be a stranger we meet along our way and we treat as our brother?



Our perception of the world and the beauty of it, if we are not good people would change when we look at a pot of flowers, a wonderful sunset, or at the poeticity of the world? A strong lack of humanity  brings with it horror or in the scheme of things a soul can accept the big discrepancies and divisions existing into ourselves, accepting also the beauty, relaxing part of the living as a biggest scheme?
Maybe, sometimes for compensating the horror of the reality?

Can a man with a heart like a stone feels the beauty of the world?


It's an impressive, captivating story from the beginning The Lonely Teddy Bear.

I started to read it yesterday and in a few hours I completed it.


The first part, bucolic. This man Jink is missing a lot Janie, a girl, it will be explained later, with which he lived when she was still a kid and that she should be 18 years old now. Still unclear why he lived with this kid. At first, with terror, you think this world and the other, of course.


It's 8 years that he doesn't see her and he is missing her a lot.


He starts a trip, discovering various people, Sam,  a past as a veteran and his choice of living in a tent. Jink will join him for a long while. Then Amber a girl with a sad past of abuses, and a dad often too drunk for being present and good for all of them.


Then a nice couple who will feed and give hospitality to Jink for months and months before he will leave them and the memories of their beloved son Jimmy dead in war, behind.


His works at a bar and he knows the young waiter...


You will love all the characters Jink will meet along the way because they're all beautiful souls.


I had recently read a book about "famous" couples like the ones portrayed in this book. The one of Jink and later Janie. Strong situations.


The life of Jink appears perfect although limited by windows. He doesn't want to look at the world through windows but take action. That's why he leaves his idyllic Yellow House for searching for Janie.


The style is shockingly interesting, because when you think you are reading a certain kind of book, later you will discover that you have in your hands something completely different.


But...This one is a book that for creativity and geniality is able to make the difference and I warmly suggest it to all of you.


The cover is beautiful, and it attracted me from the first time and it was why I picked up this book at first.  I was right because you can't put it down for any reason but you must discover what will happen next.


It is a reading for adults only. I strongly exclude or suggest it for teenagers.



I thank Netgalley for this book.


Anna Maria Polidori 

domenica, luglio 24, 2016

Invincible Louisa by Cornelia Meigs

What a beautiful, diversified and plenty of surprising facts was the life  lived by Louisa May Alcott! For sure free, the author able to become at least who she wanted to become: one of the most successful writers of this world thanks with her Little Women a classic of the American and international literature.

I read Invincible Louisa by Cornelia Meigs, a biography of the writer for children firstly published in 1933, and now back to life thanks to Endeavour Press.

When they asked me to choose which books I wanted to read at the Endeavour Press I didn't have any doubts. I wanted to start with Louisa May Alcott, because I read when a teenagers wagons of times Little Women.

I found this book spectacularly beauty and surprising!

Let's say that we can't start to speak of Louisa Alcott if, before we don't speak of her dad Bronson Alcott.

Bronson Alcott was an idealistic man not too much you know practical. Born in a farm in the East of the USA, Wolcott Connecticut, although he  enjoyed the farm he understood that his destiny was different. He wanted to study and to become a teacher. His dad didn't agree with these weird ideas of his son, but young Bronson once 18 years old decided to try to go to Virginia trying to work as a teacher and studying at the same time, but giving up because scholars too turbulent. He did in the while various works but  once returned home, he didn't bring any money, all spent in beauty clothes.

Anyway he knew Abba from Boston and married her. Great excitement, this man, Bronson blonde hair, blue eyes, tall had to be a beautiful man. The idea of Bronson of opening a school  appeared more real thanks to Reuben Haines who assured him some help. Unfortunately the man died when more or less was born Louisa in 1832. His dreams for some while in stand-by.

The family changed many houses for searching for work.
Little Louisa remembers Boston where they afforded when she was just one year old. Born on Nov 29th so a Sagittarius, little Louisa a curious of the world. Once she decided to go out all alone and to her, absolutely normal, to spend an entire afternoon in a such big city, making friendship with some contemporaries found along the Boston streets, or just visiting this big and beauty city.

Lately she fell asleep and when someone cried that a girl was missing, from the description she said: "It's me."

Once she went for some time at the house of some friends of the family and considering that the adults didn't take her in too much consideration, she started to search for someone else and she ended up to make friendship with some other poor kids living in the surrounding area and when she discovered that they were starved, she didn't hesitate to feeding them all running out all the food from the kitchen of the family. Discovered she was punished for this behavior although what she did too tender for not finding a genuine and good heart in this little kid.

It was in the Alcott's spirit and philosophy of living. Maybe they were starved as well, but if someone needed for some help, they helped.
If someone needed some coal they gave it to them suffering the cold.

They gave food, they helped.

The Alcott didn't never live a rich existence. Sometimes a life where the family could eat just two times everyday, but there was always, always a great generosity and joy, and enthusiasm for life. 

Louisa loved nature and environment and in many houses where the family afforded in, for example in Concord and Fruitlands, to her the Paradise. In particular in Fruitlands there was a barn and in that place Louisa would have started her first dramas. She was great in acting and writing.

Her dream would have been the one of becoming a writer.

While Louisa was thinking what she wanted to do once adult, Bronson had a discussion once with some people. He wanted to open a school but this school opened to everyone, Negros included without any kind of distinctions of races, religions. You know, this stuff. That man was amazingly great.

They said no and so he decided to dismantle this project and it meant again a penniless period for the Alcott family.
The Alcott were also opened against slavery and they helped many times all the Negros who escaped from the South for reaching Canada.

The same Louisa, once the Secession war started in 1861 decided to become a nurse for helping the cause of the war. She went to Washington but after just few weeks she was sick with typhoid fever.  She returned home and she recuperated gradually her health.

Other big problems in her family like the departure of their beloved Elizabeth one of her sisters.

Also other joyful moments would have surrounded the life of Louisa.

Louisa dreamed all her time of being helpful to his family and being in grade to give to them and to herself a good existence, considering, trust me the sometimes paradoxical situations in which the family fell in.

Once, Bronson, Louisa's dad, in UK for trying to see if there was work returned with other four mouths to feed! and this philosophy of living peacefully all together in a commune.

What to think when one of these friends from London tried to force Bronson to giving away his children because there would have been more food for everyone? After all the Shaker community didn't keep them all separated? Men, women, and children?

Louisa and her family survived at all of it.

The idea of Little Women born thanks to an idea of Thomas Niles from Boston. Niles asked her to write a book for girls.
Louisa didn't have any clue of how to write this book but she started to work on it while she was in Concord, Massachusetts. Inspired, she started the first chapter in June, she completed them in July.

The first part of it was published on October. Her life changed abruptly because Little Women was a very, wonderful, deserved success for this lady. Now all her dreams could be realized. A good life for everyone, although of course her private life gone forever because she was searched for autographs, for meetings, encounters. The life of a successful writer.
At the same time the second part of Little Women started to be written the same fall of that year and on may 1869 published.

Louisa would have written other three books about the sisters March and Jo's boys when Louisa learned that the husband of his sister died leaving them all alone. They had to be supported.

This family, the Alcott has always been supportive with each other and this one their main strength and what made the difference.

Louisa never married anyone, but she lived an intense life, writing, working hard at the same time for trying to help all her family, and being helpful when she could. Her legacy immensely important, because she has left a jewel of a novel as Little Women is, (and other books of course) that can be taken in consideration and inspiration also during these times from all the teenagers of the world.

She has seen a clean world, a good world, where help, love, friendship, sufferance, joy, enthusiasm, brotherhood the mixture of the family March and of course of the Alcott one and an example for every family of this world.

Anna Maria Polidori

venerdì, luglio 22, 2016

She Made me Laugh - My Friend Nora Ephron - by Richard Cohen

I couldn't be more happy when I received the notification from NetGalley that I could view, read and review She Made me Laugh - My Friend Nora Ephron - by Richard Cohen.
To me a dream.

I read it immediately!

The book published by Simon & Schuster tells the life-story of Nora Ephron my favorite director, and one of my constant inspirations.

I absolutely adore her wonderful and stunning love-stories. When Harry met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, You've got mail, fabulous, technically perfect.

I didn't know nothing of her 'till now. I just knew I love his movies.

I thought that thanks to this books I would have discover her private and public life. I haven't been deluded.

This book is beautiful, felt, written with the love of a sincere friend plenty of memories to share with his readers.

Richard Cohen one of his best friends, will tell you wonderful anecdotes that will permit you to discover the great writer, reporter, journalist, screenwriter and director with great intellectual honesty and thanks also to a friendship with her long more than 40 years.

What a screenwriter, Nora Ephron. I remember the first time I saw the poster of When Harry Met Sally in my city.
What a story When Harry Met Sally. I consider When Harry met Sally  a masterpiece of the genre like also Sleepless in Seattle and You've got Mail.
I watched You've got mail a lot of times in original!
Sharon a correspondent of mine sent me that.  I remember I cried like a kid when I received that VHS.


Her characters intelligent, in general the protagonists are journalists, now I understand the reason. Nora Ephron was also a reporter.
Men in her movies creative and smart ones. Not abstracts, but real, and with a very good sense of humor. Her love-stories cleaned, cerebral, intelligent, but tender as well.

The characters of  Annie, Sally, Kathleen in search for a relationship but at the same time independent and realized women.Perfect lines, times, soundtracks. Her love-stories are spectaculars.

This book by Richard Cohen She Made me Laugh has been a complete and stunning discovery. Most of the movies by Nora Ephron for example autobiographical...But we will see it later.

If you want to discover the story of the most known newspapers and magazines of the USA go for it.  There is the complete story. Or close to it.

The reporter, Richard Cohen a journalist of the "Washington Post" met the first time Ephron thanks to Carl Bernstein.

The name of this reporter pretty known don't you think so? He was one of "the two kids" as were considered Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward  at the Post during the years of the Watergate.Both very young, Bernstein and Woodward thanks to their  their investigative work, brought at the resignation of Richard Nixon and at the convictions of a lot of people close to the president.

Later Carl Bernstein married Nora Ephron.

Nora Ephron was born in a privileged environment and in a Jewish rich family. She was in the environment and surrounded by wonderful mind and friends, intellectuals, writers, reporters. She studied in the best schools of the USA like also all her friends. Her parents  were two playwrights and screenwriters.

Ephron had all the cards to become a very successful woman. Reading this book is like to read the story of an Olympus of wonderful, creative people.
A fairy-tales, because you will meet only very important and intelligent people of the media and movies and you will enter in a different dimension. But of course there was more than this in Nora Ephron.

There was talent and geniality.

That talent that just few people have the luck to possess. That talent able to make the difference, that talent that can't be found anywhere. That talent that is just in that person.

At 15 years Nora Ephron's mom and dad started to drink too much becoming addicted. It was a drama she wouldn't never forgot.


She started to work as a mail girl for Newsweek becoming a clipper pretty soon, and later she worked for the New York Post and many many other very prestigious newsmagazines and magazine (The New Yorker for example) including the Huffington Post in recent years. When Nora Ephron started the profession of journalist girls not taken in consideration for the work of reporters too seriously. Voracious readers she tried to read all the drafts of the books that would have been released soon.

Ephron wasn't interested to become just a housewife. She wanted to realize herself, working. She wrote, till at the end although she has always avoided to speak of her illness. Clearly a big torment to her.

Cohen talks largely of her illness, a leukemia, and the long Calvary, of the beloved writer and screenwriter.

She was scared Ephron of falling sick with a cancer, and this one was one of her biggest fears.

She was a strong lady. Someone who didn't like to hug people. She loved to demonstrate her friendship differently. She was a woman and deciding to be a reporter, a writer, a screenwriter, a  director, man's works she needed to be respected and so she couldn't be too soft, to me, but very strong and firm. Personal view.

When the wife of Martin Short died, she brought to the comedian wagons of food. At the end the actor told her that they were just him and his children and he had food. She replied him that he would have had much more food.

Nora Ephron loved round tables. There are no differences in round tables, no one is "the boss", no one is guiding the conversation. People, true, are more relaxed. Her dinners remembered because Ephron loved to ask to her guests some questions. She loved to stimulate their fantasy. In these special evenings invited actors, directors, reporters. She didn't eat a lot but her dinners sumptuous.

Strong character, famous for firing people during the first week of work during Sleepless in Seattle she also fired the first kid played the role of Joshua, the son of Sam.

Once Cohen said to VF USA that to him Nora Ephron could be a sort of dictator of Argentina the writer, screenwriter, reporter, pretty upset for it. She had a reserved character, in fact.

After the end of her marriage with Bernstein, and pregnant of Max their son, Nora Ephron back to New York City and other places as well. Soon she released Heartburn. She was becoming a great screenwriter.

The best gift donated her by life was Nick, the third husband (the first one Dan Greenburg.)

A wonderful couple, united, they lived for a long long time together, till the end of Nora Ephron.

And now the biggest discovery: the other face of Harry, the man inspired the character of Harry, in When Harry met Sally is Richard Cohen. There is, as said before in fact. a lot of Nora Ephron and her friends in her movies..

He was of inspiration because Nora Ephron and Richard Cohen for what told by the writer haven't never experienced any sexual intercourse.
Cohen adds that his writings, his conversations with Ephron, this asexual friendship were part of the movie and part of the soul of Harry, one of the funniest wonderful character ever portrayed on the big screen thanks to a brilliant Billy Crystal.

Although Nora Ephron had her own character, so a strong one, someone who wanted to run other people's lives, and someone who experienced everything in her life during the 1960s from marijuana to cocaine, passing through an abortion,- she was a feminist, surrounded by feminists - for sure on the big screen the love she wanted to donate to the viewers was a cleaned and intelligent one. A good love where the partner supportive but at the same time independent from the other one.

Her legacy is this one.

In the book many more facts, stories, like the trips in Italy and in other part of the world of  Cohen, his wife, Carl Bernstein and Ephron. Her illness, a big pain for all the people loved her.

You will find a lot of pages dedicated to Nora Ephron's illness. There is to say that the screenwriter experienced many departures during her life and all the times always respected her friends, spending time with them during these difficult times, interrupting movies for being present at the funerals of her friends.

Christmas is not so distant.

I would warmly suggest you this book also as a Christmas gift if you know someone who appreciated Nora Ephron's movies because trust me, it is funny, nice, entertaining and well, it will transport you in another dimension, with famous actors, and big reporters big magazines and newsmagazines. It will transport you in the sophisticated intellectual life of this woman with a great open mind.
It's a genuine book She Made Me Laugh, a good and tender memoir. At the end you can just appreciate the strength of  one of the most beloved icons of the American Cinema looked through the lenses of one of his best friends.

The real Harry! ;-)


Anna Maria Polidori

mercoledì, luglio 20, 2016

God Bless Every One! by Annie Tipton

When you'll read God Bless Every One! cover91420-medium by Annie Tipton and soon published, Sept 1 by Barbour Publishing,  keep close to you a box of Kleenex because they will be necessary. This book is truly moving and A Christmas Tale is able to touch our most profound cords of the soul.

There are few books in the history of Literature that, to me inspired directly by God. One of them The Comedia by Dante Alighieri and in most recent centuries, A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.

A Christmas Carol is the most powerful, true, sincere and real book about the meaning of Christmas.

There are in this magical story all the ingredients of a feast that should be a moment of union and reunion with family and friends. A feast that should embrace the person in difficulty, the one who has experienced a hard time because of the departure of some beloved relatives and a moment in which harmony and serenity should reign in all the Earth thanks also to the Christmas Spirit.

Sometimes story is completely different...

Sometimes we can meet along our way people like the protagonist of the story, Ebenezer Scrooge. People without an apparent heart, closed, disenchanted about life and Christmas and the beauty of this feast. Someone who don't love other people at all because superfluous and unnecessary. Scrooge's God and Best Friend is Money and to him exist just it.

People are irrelevant, convivial moments shouldn't exist, because senseless and people in feast and excited for the arrival of little Jesus Christ? They lose their precious time!

Ebenezer Scrooge hasn't been always a man so heartless.

He was also a normal guy, although this part of his existence now behind and forgotten.
Forgotten by a life dedicated to accumulate money just for himself.
His girlfriend at some point, when he was young, decided to move on, because she was seeing that Ebenezer was more interested in creating more money than in the construction of their relationship.
No children, no friends. Scrooge alone in this world.

The product he is now, at the moment of the story the one he became thanks to his passion and devotion for money.

Not only: the man didn't just love money, he was also very stingy and his worker, Bob Cratchit constricted at working bullied, without a decent fire, and at the limit of dignity. A dignity Bob reached into himself thanks to his hard work and his responsibility on his family. He was the one who brought food on the table of his numerous family. He couldn't risk his workplace because Scrooge did want to let him suffer cold.

The pay of Cratchit insufficient for living with dignity, for buying good food, for curing his beloved Tiny Tim the latest son suffering of an important illness.

Scrooge didn't see anything. Scrooge didn't know anything. If his employee was happy of his work, of his treatment, if he had some afflictions at home. No: Scrooge didn't know anything because, just he didn't see that there was real life all around him. He didn't feel suffering, joy, happiness, harmony, problematic of the various families he knew and the few people with which he interacted with. He was absorbed by his spasmodic research and determination of not spending money.

He was rude with people who tried to better the existence of poorest ones, he was rude with his nephew Fred, he was rude with everyone. Fred wanted to invite him for the Christmas Dinner, but Scrooge thought that this on was absolutely a horrible idea.

I think that from the Other World his partner Marley must have thought: I must stop him! And he decided to present to Scrooge the latest chance for save his soul from a secure perdition. Marley hasn't had this chance. He didn't see any signal during his life. He didn't recognize that he wasn't living a christian life. He was a sinner and he paid in the other life as well.

Something he would want to avoid to Scrooge. Because they were friends and because it is always, always a pity to lose a soul. In particular when this soul is a soul of a sinner. Too simple to save a good soul. Better to try to save the soul of someone considered lost.

Marley visited him one night telling him that he was a ghost without peace and that he was there, at least, for saving his soul.

He added that Scrooge would have been visited by various ghosts: the Ghost of Christmas Past, of Christmas Present and Christmas not yet arrived.

These visits a true revelations for Scrooge. Not only Scrooge had the privilege of seeing his past Christmas for trying to have an idea of who he has been, but he understood.

At least, he understood.

He understood that once when he worked as apprentice with Fezziwig, the Christmas' Eve was a big feast for his boss and for all of them.

His boss was not just human with him but much more than that.

A loving and cheerful man, someone everyone wanted to have around.

Fezziwig wanted to celebrate Christmas staying in company, opening the door of his house and his heart to everyone.

With the ghost of the Christmas Present Scrooge understood the joy and good spirit of his nephew Fred who, anyway wished him with all himself a Merry Christmas!

Scrooge didn't imagine. He didn't have any pale idea that his worker, Bob Cratchit lived in a house so poor, with children in great difficulties and a heavy financial situation. He fell in love for poor Tiny Tim. He needed to be cured that little kid.


With the third ghost he understood that without any change his end would have been horrible and no one would have cried or noticed that he was passed away.

Maybe people would have been happier now. After all what kind of contribution for better this man Ebenezer Scrooge brought to the world? Nothing.

The man who met these three ghosts a regenerated and new man able to opens the heart (and wallet) to everyone. And so Bob his worker worked with much more and great dignity after that moment, Tiny Tim who risked to dying, would have survived thanks to the help of Ebenezer Scrooge and the best pay received by Bob at work.

Fred would have received and shared his uncle's visits and company often during the following years and starting from Christmas Season.

Christmas, first of all became the fixation of Scrooge: the biggest occasion for celebrating his new-reborn. Because Christmas is this: our re-born of the soul for starting a new beginning accompanied by Little Jesus Christ.


In this book, beautiful, trust me, felt, accurate, the author, Annie Tipton analyzes 54 passages of A Christmas Carol implementing these passages with the word of God, with some Bible passages and with some suggestions for all of us.


Some example?


Do you know during the period of Christmas someone in need? Let's try to stay close to this person. Let's also try to live Christmas with the sanctity of the family of Bob Cratchit. Frugality is not a bad idea in a world where there is too much food and too much opulence and where social differences terribly visible. Let's try to think also at people in need.

Other suggestions will involve the preparation of Christmas, the festivity. It mustn't be perfect a Christmas for being real. More it will be "messy" more it will be perfect, because it won't be  a perfect postcard, but it will be...life and at the end you can tell: "I did it!!!"

This one is the most wonderful, wonderful book you can think of presenting during the Christmas season because it's...Christmas itself that you will present!

Dickens wrote a book inspired, truly inspired by the most authentic Christmas Spirit. (I do truly truly believe and feel the Christmas Spirit!)

The book plenty of wonderful, precious illustrations and at the beginning of the book a special page dedicated to your gift with an "Especially for..." and you can add also "Date and From" in a second page. Price is too good for not buying a lot of copies of it, for you and for all your dear ones.
It will be an unforgettable and appreciated gift.


Wishing you of living Christmas Every Day...God Bless Every One!!!


Anna Maria Polidori

martedì, luglio 19, 2016

Books for Dogs Vavavooom!!!!

From the left: Michelle, Jill, Josephine, Angela and the founder of Books for Dogs Penny Radford
The ladies of the charity Books for Dogs, created at Umbertide, Umbria various years ago are wonderful human beings.

In a few years thanks to their association, they have helped the dogs of the shelter of Lerchi, presenting them a different dignity. With the years, another reality called Argo added to their priorities.

These ladies are British, Americans, Australians, and from a lot of years live in our territory. They sell their used books in the market of the city every Wednesday morning and when it is impossible to do that, during fall and winter, at the Bar Il Giardino.

Possible also to rent a large selections of DVD for 2 euros per week.

These ladies created with the time a real strong competition with local booksellers and DVDS stores ;-)

The latest novelties, the Barbecue Afternoon organized from the ladies for helping the realities that they're supporting last July 10th.

Angela Nutt from the committee: "We thought you would like to know that, at first count, we made €1,160. at the barbecue last week.  We are very pleased with the amount which will help all the needy dogs and cats at the refuges we support."

Angela continues: "Many thanks to all of you who both came and also supported us by donations.  We thought it was a really fun event and Gilly and Gordon Carey did us really proudly by opening their beautiful home and gardens for the event.  The weather also helped!"

Another initiative on Wednesday evening 20th July: a dinner hosted by ARGO in Piazza Matteotti, Umbertide. Live music, it will be another fun evening.

If you want to attend the dinner, it will be indispensable to contact David Wetherell on 339 374 3753 as soon as possible. Vegetarian and vegan dishes available, the cost is €20 for adults, €10 for children. Dinner is at 8pm.



Anna Maria Polidori

lunedì, luglio 18, 2016

Gratitude by Dani DiPirro

cover85416-mediumThe sentiment of gratitude is one of the most intense and important feeling in this world. In a  world plenty of ingratitude,  Dani DiPirro author of Gratitude , published by Watkins wants to let us develop and "feel" this sentiment.

Sometimes this life is stressing and now more than in the past plenty of uncertainties. But...Life is also beautiful and there are special people in this world that we can call Angels, able to help us, able to let us feel special and important to them. Gratitude is this: recognizing the role of other people in our life and vice-versa.

It's a special attitude, a special love for others, for the world, for the various situations we meet along our journey that we call life.

It means to be... grateful for existing, for being healthy, for being happy, for having a work, a roof where to rest. Gratitude means to be grateful for the people with which we are sharing our existence, because we know we can count on them, gratitude means also to see the beauty of this world and to be grateful for it.
Gratitude means to say thanks to all that people that are able to make us happy. People who believe in us and support us.

There are moments in our life in which it seems that our actual conditions can't be too much grateful. In this case we can research through our memory all the wonderful past moments spent with our friends and our dear ones, being grateful for these memories.

Let's also try to look with good, positive eyes at this world re-discovering everyday as if we would be many children still at the discovery of the world and its wonders.
Discovering the beauty of the world will mean automatically to bring joy and beauty in our life and later maybe transform all this beauty in a  creative process able to rest.

The author suggests also to keep a journal, writing down what you should be grateful for.

Try to see also what you can do for other people. A person in needs, someone with which you can share your world with, will immensely appreciate it and you will feel a great joy and happiness and a true sense of freedom.

A lot of virtues will follow your positive attitude, so keep open the door of gratitude and life will smile you back and you will see a real change in term of quality of life!


Powerful the message written by Dani DiPirro in a moment so confused for the humanity.
Positive vibes, as positive must always be the man.

This book can be a great gift as well! for everyone and I truly recommend it to everyone!

Thanks to netgalley for this book!



Anna Maria Polidori

The Truth Is Beyond Belief - Some thoughts to make you think about the power of your thoughts - by Jerry Durr

cover91986-mediumThe Truth Is Beyond Belief - Some thoughts to make you think about the power of your thoughts - released by Publish Green is the latest book by Jerry Durr. As also told by the author this book wants to be an inspiration for who need some words of encouragement, or just some good inspirational words. Discovering ourselves, who we are, why we are on this Earth and our purpose in our life one of the best thing we can do for staying always focused on our existence. Happily.


Thoughts can be powerful in positive and negative measures. We can develop negative thoughts, able to capture the most destructing part of ourselves, as we can develop wonderful beautiful thoughts able to give a positive imprint to our life, because positive thoughts attracts other positive thoughts and the materialization of these thoughts will be wonderful facts.

Jerry Durr wants to inspire people, giving them suggestions for trying to let them appreciate the miracle of themselves.
Few chapters with great real gem of wisdom where Durr will touch many aspects of the living.

The miracle of our existence first of all. We live, as he says in the book "A spiritual experience in a physical body." A spiritual and body experience that we must try to preserve. There are many risks along this trip says the author. Thoughts and beliefs are able to separate people. Thoughts separate the visible from the invisible and sometimes we want to be separated from God and other people.. Why this? Well for many reasons. The author tells that thought is a creative patterns and each of us can become a "flexible inflexible." Our mental patterns  can be the cause of illnesses.
We should try to remove all the causes of our unhappiness. If we can do that it will be possible to heal.

Most illnesses in fact are just caused by a mental process of frustration that at first will touch the psychological sphere and lately if psychologically the mind can't heal itself will become a real illness.
"Pain is physical but suffering is mental," writes the author.

We should try to see not just the sufferance that there is around us but all the beauty of this world and of our life focusing on the present without to complaining for the past or experiencing terror for an unknown remote future. Living in the present the best first act for staying more happy and relaxed.

When we will stop to have fear and negative emotions then we will start to act and think positively.

Love, Peace and Joy the three flowers to cultivate in our garden of soul.

We create our reality and it can be a beautiful reality or a scaring one.

There is to remember the author adds that "We are not in the world" but "The world is in us."

Let's stop to live of illusions because illusions can imprison people. Heaven can be found but only within ourselves.

We were born with free will and destiny. Then of course during our life we have taken choices, create friendship, that obviously have created our path in this world.

The main problem of Man is that he is never satisfied. We want always more.

But what it will be important to do is to cultivate love stopping to hate.


It is a beautiful and inspiring book this one. One of the most elevated ones I read. I suggest it to you strongly if you search for some words able to keep you more tranquil. If you need a guidance and you don't know where to search for, or just if you want a self-help book able to keep your mind opened and alert about the priorities of this life.Without forgetting God and his role in our existence.

Many thanks to Netgalley for this book.




Anna Maria Polidori

I found you by Lisa Jewell

cover87747-medium
Another masterpiece the new book by Lisa Jewell "I found You." I am sorry for the delay, the book was released this July 14th but we are celebrating the 60 years of marriage of my mom and dad so it is hectic time and I read less. Yesterday I read this book. I couldn't put it down. The story absorbed me completely.

I found it captivating and genial. Is it a love-story? Yes of course it is, but, not a common one, and not wanted after all by some protagonists, if you understand what I want to say. It's a story of destiny, of a casual encounter.

The book is "divided in three sections" in which Lisa Jewell will give voices to the various, diversified characters.

In one of them the story of Alice, in the second the one of Lily, in the third... 1993.

Past will be another great protagonist creating a a great connection with the present. A present that is the echo of the past. A present compenetrated by the past. A present that can't find peace if the demons of the past won't be defeated in particular if they return on the surface.

This book is harmonic, intriguing and perfect if you want to search not just for a love-story but for something else. If you want, in synthesis to read a book with a good end, but able to leave you with something more than just an old-fashioned great happy end.

I found you in fact will let you think a lot and Alice, Frank, Lily, Carl, Tony, the journalist, the policewoman won't disappear at the horizon immediately after you will close this book.

The beauty of Lisa Jewell's books is this one. They remain.

The story starts with Alice. Alice, 41 mother of 3 children generated by three different men,  single, three dogs as ulterior companion.

The other story the one of Lily, an Ukrainian girl of 21 just afforded from two couple of weeks in London with her mature husband of 41 years. An idyllic love-story. Carl is wonderful, tender, a man every woman would desire, plenty of attentions.

One night, though, he doesn't return home after work.
Lily, worried, goes at the local police-station for trying to discover if they can start to search for her husband. At first as always happens, the policewoman thinks that maybe Lily is too worried. Carl can be everywhere. Maybe he is in a café drinking a beer with a friend or who knows where with someone else?

At the same time Alice, she lives in a beautiful British countryside, finds a solitary man, close to the sea. He is in a meditative state and he seems to be absent. He doesn't remember anything, he doesn't remember who he is. He doesn't know where he wanted to go, who he is, why he is there and if he is searching for some answers.

Alice although her children are skeptical and think that their mom is too much imprudent gives him hospitality. Also her friends are skeptical as well. Alice sounds too opened. And if this man is a modern Jack the Ripper? She can't know who this mysterious man she starts to call Frank is, but Alice knows he is a good man. And that she can trust him. She knows it.

He is nice, he is polite. He is attractive and Alice finds attraction for him...

At the same time Lily lives another horror. Yes, because if at first that policewoman didn't want to help her because still too soon for doing anything once activated the procedure for searching for mr. Carl Monroe, police discovers that this man doesn't exist. The name is fake, his identity bought somewhere for who knows which hidden reasons. Maybe her adorable Carl a terrible criminal.

"Who did I marry?" thinks devastated young Lily, all worried and desperate. She trusted this man, she trusted Carl or whoever this man's name was, and she knew that he loved her, although there were also dark sides she discovered with terror...

The third section of the book dedicated at a special year: 1993.

A crucial year where a girl starts a relationship with a boy. The brother didn't approve this relationship and the girl still young pretty skeptical will try to move on from him. The consequences of this reject but also friendship and nonacceptance, a party with the use of drugs able to alter the perception of reality the theater of terrible facts with repercussion also in present times and as always happen change of destinies of people involved in this story.

Sorry but I won't tell you more in this sense because the story is too precious for being revealed and the heart of the entire book.


When you think that Lisa Jewell has sorted out the dilemma in a certain way, you must change again your mind. Jewell is able to change cards various times during the narrative process.

I can classify the new book by Lisa Jewell as the book of  "Man's return" in every sense.

We all know what it means to live shocking experiences. In general  we remove them completely from our mind. Sometimes the phantoms from the past re-appear at the horizons re-creating again the past horror. We should ask: is it possible to construct, although the mind removed everything, an existence in the while? Because the soul heavily touched by these facts...And is it possible to forgive?

Thematics of this book profound. When you will pick up this book, you won't just pick up a wonderful love-story but a book about lost, memory, love, friendship, devotion, trust, research, hidden secrets buried in the past.
Because as often we know, reality is just apparently the one we are seeing and the one we are living in.


I suggest to you this book immensely. Lisa Jewell  is in grade to give body and soul to all her protagonists with another wonderful masterpiece of love and life, pretty psychological but with the proper lightness as well.

Many thanks for the mention of Johnny Depp 10406537_296973293809654_7333082697670845881_nds, captain Jack Sparrow and Pirates of the Caribbean22_19

Being a great fan of Johnny, immensely grateful! ;-)

I thank so much Netgalley and the publisher for this book.



Anna Maria Polidori

giovedì, luglio 14, 2016

A Rhyming Explosion of Love and Emotion by Clive Saffron


cover92750-mediumA beautiful and surprising positive discovery the book of poetry: A Rhyming Explosion of Love and Emotion by Clive Saffron published by Troubador Publishing Ltd.
I choose the book on NetGalley.


With my great surprise and pleasure this poet, Clive Saffron is a truly romantic man and romanticism his personal flag in a world so disenchanted and pretty stressed and a real real joy to read these . wrote wonderful love poems.
They left me ecstatic in the real sense of the words. Decades that I didn't read such beautiful and positive words about love. An age I didn't read love portrayed, or pictured, painted, so exactly as the poet did through his words.

Saffron is able to portraying what it means real love: when we love we want the best for the other person, we want to love him, we want to stay with him we want to avoid him sufferance and we want to share every second with him. A person changes when in a new relationship and in most cases for better because loving means to be able to give our best to the other one and vice versa. Life is more beauty, colors more vivid, air fresher. We are inspired by the other person, we add light and color at another existence and the same happens to us.

Love is never opportunistic, but always grateful and a great gift. There are people who won't never try the real meaning of love but who will experience it, will discover a precious gift.

Love can be the best resource for bettering ourselves and our companion, as also said by the poet.


Also in the second part, where Saffron analyzes love's pain you won't  find stressing or sad or desperate and frustrated poems. No: all the opposite.

These words are real balsam for the soul and big treasures, because they will reassure, they will speak of hope, they will speak, also when a love ends, of the beautiful  gift experienced thanks to the time spent with the other person. There is a positive approach to the relationship with the other one and of course, there is Love.Love speaks through all these poems. Ral Love is everywhere. In every word, in every poem, in every felt sensation.

Love as a personal growth, love as the best resource for our daily life.


In the book also various "pills of love", little aphorisms written by Clive Saffron.

I do truly recommend to you this book of poetry for the beautiful words and sentiments expressed by the poet and because once for all, ladies and gentlemen: Love is Back! in poetry as well.



Anna Maria Polidori

mercoledì, luglio 13, 2016

An affair with beauty - The Mystique of Howard Chandler Christy - The Magic of Youth - by James Philip Head

Nancy Palmer had clear ideas when she was a teenager of 16 years: thanks to her beauty she decided to leave her parents and her old life. She wanted in fact, to become a Gibson girl. So, the first step? The Big Apple.

At that time the most famous painter and illustrator in New York City was mr. Gibson. Portraying myriads of girls, Gibson was in grade to influence thanks to his drawings, paintings and illustrations the American culture and style course.

Nancy arrived to NYC and arranged a meeting with Gibson, although Gibson told her he preferred to recommend her to Christy if she wouldn't mind. Adding: if he will bring you to Ohio where he is born you will return as Mrs. Christy.

It's an effervescent book this first memoirs part, An Affair with Beauty - The Mystique of Howard Chandler Christy - The Magic of Youth -  cover91991-medium written by James Philip Head and published by North Loop Books. A trilogy, this one the first part. 
Once at the university Head discovered a gilt-edged folio of Charles Gibson's The Social Ladder, starting to fall in love immediately for these illustrations. Illustrations of beautiful girls, Gibson was the first so-called "Illustrator of Beauty."

Although Head interested by Gibson's work later he became fascinated by the art of Howard Chandler Christy, personification of the American Dream. Poor, thanks to his talent Christy became one of the most relevant, acclaimed and stunning artist of his time.

Since there, James Head researched for people and illustrations  and places and museums, knocking at doors always opened, interviewing wagons of relatives, friends, and people in contact with the painter and illustrator. At the end he decided to write with this material some books.

As also Nancy did, Howard Christy as said, left his house in Ohio for moving his first steps as illustrator in NYC.

His teacher incredibly enthusiastic for this devoted and very talented pupil, the young man became very soon one of the main illustrators of the most prestigious and big magazines in New York City. It says all of his genuine talent and geniality, although for example Christy said once to a very young Nancy that talent all alone wouldn't never have paid. Training a talented person the best thing for obtaining the best.

After a while, and continuing we can say for all his life this process of researching for beauty and beautiful women for paintings and illustrations, Christy developed the desire also to portray famous people and situations. Actors, actresses, various Presidents of the Usa, senators, Benito Mussolini, the italian dictator. Christy portrayed everyone.

Born at the end of 1800, the fatal meeting with Nancy Palmer and their marriage.

Nancy remembers in the book that at the time of their first meeting he was 39 but he demonstrated 25 years and he was absolutely the most beautiful man she had every seen in all her life.

The first time he met him, well I guess it was a sort of dream to her, at the old Waldorf-Astoria Hotel.

In itself the book is explored and narrated in first person choosing the privileged voice, eyes and spirit of the second-wife of the famous illustrator: Nancy Palmer Christy.

Mrs.Christy will remember firstly the day of the departure of her husband in 1942. 80 year, Christy was born in 1872 although he always thought he was born in 1873. Nancy remembers he hadn't lost his enthusiasm for life.


According to Christy three words will follow people for their entire life: Youth, Age and Beauty.

Youth, as also said Lorenzo Dé Medici, pretty quickly will pass away leaving the place at other Life's seasons. The second word let us think we are not anymore that young the word: "Age." Age means that we can start to compare the "dear old times" with the the newest people's ones. But so, should we start to be sad because we are more adult? No because age brings wisdom, a different capacity of seeing things under other perspectives, because it's a normal growth of body and spirit.
Of course mrs Nancy said some of their friends complained a lot sometimes for not being anymore as young as they were, but not them.


What will remain so of this life and what will be searched for all the life from Man? Beauty. Beauty in fact is not dirty, offensive, immoral, but harmonic, immortal and in peace with the universe and good for our souls and our feelings.

This philosophy inspired all Christy's life.

The book opens officially, after an introduction on the works of Christy with the heart attack and unexpected departure of the creative.

They didn't wait something so abruptly and dramatic, tells Nancy Christy although Christy had suffered of a heart attack one night closely to Christmas in 1941. He sorted out that first heart attack successfully.

Nancy remembers the touching moments followed the news of the heart attack of her husband.

Once returned home Christy started to receive every sorta of gifts,flowers, baskets of food, stay-well cards from the most diversified and famous people. Christy was a friend of reverend Norman Vincent Peale and he wrote him beautiful and encouraging words.

It was a day like another one, when Christy asked to his wife to go to the bank. Mrs Christy left the husband with one of their maid and a dear beloved friend for discovering at her return that her husband, the reason of her life was passed away.

Nancy Christy lived devastatingly moments. She felt a cold spot in a room for example, and she lived per years with the memory of her husband without to search other company. The funeral will take a lot of pages because Nancy Christy interested to remember all the most important and famous participants at the funeral.

Then, fresh air, absolutely another atmosphere, her first meeting with her future husband, and her trip with him in Ohio, a trip for discovering a place the artist loved a lot, but also for understand him and his soul much better.

The scheme of the book starts with the end of this illustrator and with the beginning of the romantic story with Nancy. I found it stylistically captivating.

It's an old-fashioned atmosphere, nostalgic, the structure of the book is precious, and also the English language extremely cured. Not the common English you find in modern books, but an old-fashioned style, precious as life once was precious.

The character of Nancy Christy wonderfully well portrayed by the writer for sure.

I can't wait to read the second book of this trilogy.

I thanks Netgalley for this beautiful book.


Anna Maria Polidori