“All ten short stories in this collection demonstrate how Travel can be a catalyst for self-discovery. Each one of the protagonists in these stories experiences a life-changing epiphany while visiting a place away from home. Some become aware of the social injustices that are hidden in their own country but are revealed in foreign places, some become aware of certain freedoms and possibilities that are not permitted on their own native ground. Some people travel to a place they once called or still call “home” only to discover that “home” is no longer there. In any case, these well-crafted narrative gems subtly and elegantly proclaim that Travel Can be Broadening, that all journeys are spiritual journeys.”
Travel. It can affect you and challenge you in so many ways.
The author explores various topics and journeys in a way that is vey frank, honest and raw. Some stories made me think, some made me sympathize, and some made me a little uncomfortable. And really, isn’t that what travel does? Thinking back to my own experiences in different countries, from short visits to trying to make a home, these feelings are very much on par. Travel is not just seeing cool sights, trying new food, or getting that perfect picture. It is experiencing a new way of life, challenging preconceptions, discovering new parts of ourselves and our own capabilities. It is seeing ourselves, our relationships and our situations in a new light, and maybe facing some harsh realities. It is part thrilling and part humbling. With this collection of stories, Wasela Hiyate captures these emotions and the journeys of individuals who find themeselves in a new world, whether it be an immigrant making a new home, or a traveler in a new land. Overall, it is an interesting selection of stories, with particular standouts: Mo, 1972 Poster Girl, Jaime and Alice, and Travel is so Broadening. Each story will affect the reader in a different way and elicit an opinion, which is why I feel this collection is a great source for discussion.
*ARC provided by NetGalley. Publication date: September 15, 2015.