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Reading books transports me to a realm far beyond my present environment, to places never dreamed possible. Books are my escape mechanism, whether the genre is a historical novel, an adventure travel book, or a memoir.

Years after I left my beloved Japan, I read Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden. His description of Sayuri racing through the narrow streets in a driving rainstorm, a pungent aroma of fish emitting from the fish market, vicariously carried me back to Japan. Within 428 pages, I was in Japan once again. Isn't it wonderful to read a book that comes alive?

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Books to Read and Recommend

Nicholas and Alexandra by Robert K. Massie, (571 pages)

Nicholas and Alexandra is a fascinating narrative of the fall of Imperial Russia. Intimate details of the Romanov family, the suffering of the young Tsarevich Alexis coping with the excruciating pain of hemophilia, the destructive influence of the Monk Rasputin, and the final days of Nicholas and Alexandra and their five children are impeccably chronicled in this book.

Peter the Great, His Life and World by Robert K. Massie
(855 pages)
Another excellent historical narrative by Mr. Massie.

Eleni by Nicholas Gage, Ballantine Books, (470 pages)
Eleni is a true story written by Greek-born Nicholas Gage, a former investigative reporter and foreign correspondence for The New York Times. He returned to Greece to find out what happened to his mother Eleni, murdered at the hands of the Greek Communists during the Greek Civil War in 1954.

Not Even My Name by Thea Halo, Picador USA, (325 pages)
Another true story of a woman's harrowing account of the destruction of her family in Turkey after World War I.

Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis, Scribner Paperback Fiction, (311 pages)
Although Zorba is a fictitious character; he is Everyman with a Greek accent.

The Olive Farm: A Memoir of Life, Love and Olive Oil in the South of France by Carol Drinkwater, The Overlook Press (332 pages)

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