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Alice Steinbach’s work at the Baltimore Sun was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing in 1985. She was appointed the 1998-99 McGraw Professor of Writing at Princeton University and is currently a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow. She lives in Baltimore, Maryland.
This is travel-writing for the modern woman who can afford to do it in style. What an inspired idea for instead of just inquisitive visits, the author hops around the world doing courses! I love it; music in Cuba, cooking in Paris, calligraphy and flower arranging in Kyoto, a hundred times better than just the world trip. She is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist so the writing is good too.
A few years ago, Alice Steinbach, a Pulitzer prize winning journalist decided to take a break from her life. She took a leave from her job, friends and family to go on a European journey of self-discovery, and her first book, WITHOUT RESERVATIONS, was the exquisite result of that trip. But once Steinbach had opened the door to a new way of living, she found herself unwilling to return to her old routine. She left her job and went travelling again, only this time her objective was not so much one of self-discovery as it was a reaching out. She wanted to learn, by taking lessons and courses, but also by connecting to and learning from the people she would encounter along the way. Choosing exactly where to go and what to study turned out to be harder than she'd anticipated, but Steinbach found herself repeatedly drawn to the interests and fantasies of her youth. And so her lifelong fascination with writing, animals, gardening, and food led her to study dog training in Scotland, writing in Prague, gardening in Provence, calligraphy and flower arranging in Kyoto, music in Cuba, cooking in Paris and Jane Austen in Exeter. Her weeks and months spent with fellow students of all ages are, as she'd hoped, every bit as educational as her courses. And studying side by side with people preparing for careers in these various fields gives Steinbach a second chance at some roads not taken - a chance to reconnect with her past, when so many options were still open to her. In pursuing interests she's never had time to fully explore, she finds that her sense of curiosity is as strong as it ever was, and, as she discovers during the course of this wonderful trip, we are never too old to learn.
Without Reservations is about a woman's dream come true - taking a year off to travel the world and rediscover what it is like to be an independent woman, without ties and without reservations.'In many ways, I was an independent woman,' writes Alice Steinbach, single working mother and Pulitzer prize-winning journalist. 'For years I'd made my own choices, paid my own bills, shovelled my own snow, and had relationships that allowed for a lot of freedom on both sides.' Slowly, however, she saw that she had become quite dependent in another way. 'I had fallen into the habit - of defining myself in terms of who I was to other people and what they expected of me.'Who am I, she wanted to know, away from the things that define me - my family, children, job, friends? Steinbach searches for the answer in some of the most exciting places in the world: Paris, where she finds a soulmate in a Japanese man; Oxford, where she learns more from a ballroom dancing lesson than any of her studies; Milan, where she befriends a young woman about to be married.Beautifully illustrated with postcards Steinbach wrote home to herself, Without Reservations is an unforgettable voyage of discovery.
American journalist Alice Steinbach took a year off to live in four cities - Paris, Venice, London and Oxford - when she realized she had entered a new phase of life. Her sons had graduated from college; she had been divorced for a long time; she was a successful journalist. While there was nothing really wrong with her life, she felt restless. Could she live independently of her family, her friends, her career? Steinbach searches for the answer to this provocative question firstly in Paris, where she finds a soul mate in a Japanese man; in Milan, where she befriends a young woman about to marry, and in the evocative cities of Oxford and Venice. Her trip is peppered with accounts of the exotic strangers she meets, her reflections on life and the observational postcards she wrote to herself during her year away. Colourful, inspiring and beautifully told, Without Reservations will take the reader on a unique voyage of discovery into a woman's life, as she evolves a new one.
"e;The first book by Pulitzer Prize winner Alice Steinbach is an intimate, personal collection of essays, remembrances, and columns that follows in the creative nonfiction tradition of Anna Quindlen and May Sarton. While it recounts the experience and observations of a divorced, working mother, it expresses hopes and fears universal to all women. Steinbach focuses on the big and small things of life: the bond between lifelong friends; coming to grips with loss; the quiet, everyday moments between parents and child; the spiritual connection to nature; the realities of being a single parent. She writes of the people who've touched her own life: the influential teacher; the worldly aunt; the writer hero; the woman she sees regularly at a bus stop as both head to work. She offers us beautifully written lessons she's learned during a lifetime of changes and challenges."e;