Reviews of my favorite books written by expatriates, journalists, and diplomats on what it's really like to live abroad

Monday, June 1, 2009

Book Review: North of Ithaka by Eleni N. Gage

Daughter of Nicholas Gage, in her late 20s, New York journalist Eleni Gage gave up her job and spent a year in the small village of Lia in northern Greece in order to rebuild the family home which had been abandoned 50 years before when her grandmother Eleni was infamously murdered.

What's wonderful for me about this book is that the author not only shows the every day life of the village as it is today but also reveals what it's like being the first generation born in the USA, complete with tons of aunties full of life advice from the old country.

If you've ever wondered what it would be like to move to a small Greek town in the mountains, this is the book for you. Rather unromantically, every single inhabitant is at or over retirement age. But, Eleni makes friends with most, creating a community and support network of grey haired friends. You get the feeling that if younger Greeks stuck around in the old towns, she'd be there still.

Includes eight pages of photos of the people and places described in the book (very welcome, especially because so few memoirs include photos) and details about Eleni's home renovation (nearly a complete rebuild) of her grandmother's traditional stone home.

No comments:

Post a Comment