Tag Archives: Book Reviews

Calling Myself Home: Living Simply, Following Your Heart and What Happens When You Jump by Robin Rainbow Gate

There were several things that resonated with me personally in the memoir Calling Myself Home: Living Simply, Following your Heart and What Happens When You Jump by Robin Rainbow Gate. Although I didn’t have her more privileged childhood, I too, heard the call to Mexico and found myself home in this rural, brilliantly colored land. 

The author studied herbal lore extensively, learning at the feet of some amazing herboleras (herbalists) on both sides of the border. The book thus is divided into sections that coincide with the concept of the Medicine Wheel, as understood by the Native Americans and Mexicas. 

There is considerable time devoted to the author’s childhood and early memories. At first I was frustrated, ready to get to the journey in Mexico. However, as I read, I realized that in order to understand how the author came to be where she was, it was important to see where she had been. 

The author’s life as she settled and embraced Mexico was as fulfilling as you’d expect. She described her wanderings in mountain villages, frustrations with a new way of learning, experiences with unknown sights, sounds, and tastes and her gradual growth as a person as a result of these things. 

Delightfully, at the end of the book, there are self-reflection questions so that the reader too can devise a plan to live life more fully. Honestly, there aren’t many women who would or could follow in the author’s footsteps. However, we each have our own path to follow, some of which cross the mountains and deserts of Mexico. The questions provide an excellent starting point for anyone looking for a more authentic life. Perhaps you’ll too find Mexico calling.

Click here to read more about Robin Rainbow Gate.

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Giving up on Paid Book Reviews

me reading

If you remember, awhile back I thought I’d try my hand at reviewing books.  (See Online Book Reviewer).  I have officially thrown in the towel on this venture.  Can you make money reviewing books?  Yes.  Did I make money reviewing books?  Yes.  Do I want to continue doing this?  No.

There are a few reasons for this.  Originally, I had the option to review books on my blog and get paid for it.  Not all the books I reviewed were paid, but there were some that gave me that extra incentive.  Recently the rules were changed.  Now, book reviews would be paid based on the blog’s popularity instead of a fixed amount.  Well, I’m not going to win any popularity contests, so that seriously cut into my profit margin.

Then the new policy stated that only reviewers with a level 4 or higher could even apply for these paid reviews.  I’m stuck at level 2.  I mean, really stuck there even though my editorial analysis score is 73% (the average rating is 58%) and I have received several perfect review scores recently.  I thought maybe I could do a few more free reviews to bolster my status, but when I went to pick a new book, I discovered that the webmaster placed a bogus book on the list to make sure that reviewers were reading the book information before choosing a book.  I always do, so I didn’t trigger the trap, but it was annoying. 

I figured I still had the chance to win the daily drawing.  Even if I didn’t win randomly, eventually I would get to the top of the heap and they would HAVE to give me some money.  So 477 entries later, I did win.

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The retweets for cash option also underwent some changes.  Now, instead of just liking, retweeting and commenting on the tweet, I would have to add the book to my virtual shelf.  Only the system didn’t recognize a book that I already had added to my shelf and so I get this message:

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And that was the final straw.  You may still see some book reviews on my blog now and then, but they won’t be for this particular organization.

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