BlogChatter Book Review: Tales from my Travel Treasury
In Focus: Tales of my Travel Treasury written by Noor Anand Chawla
Being a travel-lover and a blogger I spend a disproportionately long amount of time reading travel blogs. This is a familiar zone, that’s what I thought when I downloaded this book by Noor Anand. Well, it’s a pleasure to admit that I was wrong. Noor’s book is about her journey of life through stories of her travel encounters. Apart from the ardent love to explore the world, there’s not much in common between me and Noor, and that’s a good thing. It was a whole new world, a different kind of childhood, adolescence and travel stories that unfolded in front of me as I read. I’ll come to that part later.
About the book
Tales from my Travel treasury stays true to each and every word of its title. It’s what it promised to be and a little more. You will find tales, lots of them, sweet little tales of an Indian girl growing up. The tales are picked up from what can very aptly describe as a “travel treasury”. Noor is a well-traveled woman, who has inherited the passion of exploration from her father. No, she is not a full-time backpacker but a lawyer and a doting mother. Like many of us, she manages to squeeze in time for travel in her busy life of being a lawyer, a wife, a daughter, and a mother. And she does it well. The book does talk about the places she has been to, but it doesn’t focus on them. It focuses on her stories, and how her experiences shaped her life and personality.
The book grabs your attention right from the beginning, almost like fiction does. Noor has a great flair for writing that keeps you engaged. You are with her when she goes on her childhood expeditions with her family, you feel her anxiety, her thrill, and her melt-downs. Her stories are unfiltered and unapologetic. She talks about things that many would be uncomfortable talking about. Nothing sounds like preaching yet the book does touch upon liberalism, feminism, and free-will in the most subtle ways.
The chapters of the book are independent, in the sense, you can read them in any order and still enjoy it. However, they are arranged chronologically, so reading them in that order makes you feel like they are all connected.
What I loved about the book
As a middle-class Bengali girl I never really knew what it meant to go on family vacations to exotic locations in India and abroad. Travel for leisure was a luxury we couldn’t afford financially, although we did manage a few vacations with our extended family. And there’s the difference that I mentioned in the introduction. I didn’t see shadows of my life in hers, yet I connected with her on a personal level. That’s indeed the charm of good writing. It makes you step into a world different from yours and lets you be a part of it.
The captivating narrative is set at a perfect pace. It neither drags nor does it look rushed at any point in time. The alliterative title of each chapter adds to its flavor. If you are not much into traveling, beware, the book will leave you with insatiable wanderlust.
What I would has loved more
Well, if there’s something I felt missing in the book they are pictures. There are a few but I felt it was less for a travel book. Digging out old pictures from archives can be a daunting task I understand but as a reader, I wish I could see streets where she strolled in London or the Disneyland of Paris or the amazing spa resort she talked about. There are many places where I felt a picture or two would enhance my experience of this virtual journey but I would stop here at the risk of giving out spoilers.
I recommend this book to everyone. It has a universal appeal and you will enjoy it. You can download the book for free in the BlogChatter Library. You can also download my book “15 days in Europe” for free from the library. Note, it’s a limited period offer. This month I also completed one year of blogging! Read my post to know what I have learned in one year of travel blogging.
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This review is a part of BlogChatter Book review program and I am totally enjoying this reading spree.