Author - Marian Haley Beil

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Review — THE EMPEROR AND THE ELEPHANTS by Richard Carroll (CAR)
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Talking with Mary Dana Marks (Iran), author of WALLED IN, WALLED OUT
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Talking with Mark Walker (Guatemala)
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New books by Peace Corps Writers — May 2017
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Taylor Dibbert (Guatemala) at HP – not Hewlett/Packard!
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Review — SPIES AND DESERTERS by Martin Ganzglass (Somalia)
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“Nebaj Notes: Revisiting Peace Corps Guatemala” by Taylor Dibbert (Guatemala)
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WALLED IN, WALLED OUT published by Mary Dana Marks (Iran)
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SPIES AND DESERTERS published by Martin Ganzglass (Somalia)
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New books by Peace Corps writers — March & April 2017

Review — THE EMPEROR AND THE ELEPHANTS by Richard Carroll (CAR)

  The Emperor and the Elephants: A Peace Corps Volunteer’s Story of Life during the Late 1970s in the Central African Empire Richard W. Carroll (Central Africa Republic 1976–82) Peace Corps Writers May 2016 186 pages $15.00 (paperback); $3.99 (Kindle) Reviewed by Mark T. Jacobs (Paraguay 1978–80) • A LONG-TIME WILDLIFE CONSERVATIONIST, Richard Carroll began his engagement with Africa as a Volunteer in the Central African Republic in the late 1970s. His memoir spans the decades that have come and gone since then while emphasizing the early years. Although the natural world is the focus of the book, Carroll draws a human frame around his observations of animals, plants, terrain, and the weather. He does this two ways. Both of them enrich the narrative, leaving the reader with an appreciation of the complex interactions of humankind with the planet we inhabit, along with a heightened awareness of the threat to the . . .

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Talking with Mary Dana Marks (Iran), author of WALLED IN, WALLED OUT

  In April, Mary Dana Marks published Walled In, Walled Out: A Young American Woman in Iran with Peace Corps Writers. She describes her book this way: “A young American woman comes of age in Iran, threading her way through the venerable history and culture of this ancient, proud Muslim land to find her own unique role.” Here she talks of her Peace Corps experience, her career, and how she came to write Walled In, Walled Out. • Where and when did you serve in the Peace Corps? I was a Volunteer in Iran from 1964 to 1966. What was your Peace Corp project assignment? I was part of a large TEFL group, Iran 4, which trained at the University of Michigan during the summer of 1964. We studied Farsi, of course, and Iranian history and culture. Working with U of M’s summer English Language Institute students, we trained to be teachers . . .

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Talking with Mark Walker (Guatemala)

  Mark Walker recently published Different Latitudes: My Life in the Peace Corps and Beyond with Peace Corps Writers. Read more about Mark,  his writing and his book. • Mark, where and when did you serve in the Peace Corps? I served in Guatemala from 1971 to 1973. What was your Peace Corps project assignment? My Peace Corps program was a soil fertilization project that operated under the auspices of the Guatemalan Ministry of Agriculture in cooperation with the University of North Carolina through a contract with USAID. We inventoried soil productivity in our site by taking soil samples and sending them to UNC for analysis. We also tested the productivity of new seed varieties (corn, wheat, beans and potatoes) which were treated with different types of fertilizers. Tell us about where you lived and worked in-country. Initially, I was sent to one of the highest points in Central America, Ixchiguan, in the highlands . . .

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New books by Peace Corps Writers — May 2017

  To purchase any of these books from Amazon.com — Click on the book cover, the bold book title, or the publishing format you would like — and Peace Corps Worldwide, an Amazon Associate, will receive a small remittance from your purchase that will help support the site and the annual Peace Corps Writers awards. We are now including a one-sentence description — provided by the author — for the books listed here in hopes of encouraging readers  1) to order the book and 2) to volunteer to review it. See a book you’d like to review for Peace Corps Worldwide? Send a note to peacecorpsworldwide@gmail.com, and we’ll send you a copy along with a few instructions. • Portraits of Innocence: The Children of Ahero Photos Bie  Bostrom (Kenya  2004–06) CreateSpace May, 2017 42 pages $20.00 (paperback) Here are African children in their daily activities: balancing pails of water on their heads; watching after younger siblings; toting twigs . . .

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Taylor Dibbert (Guatemala) at HP – not Hewlett/Packard!

  Taylor Dibbert (Guatemala 2006–08) is a freelance writer and contributor to HuffPost (nee Huffington Post). He recently posted a quick piece on Trump, the Peace Corps and soft power. You can: read Taylor’s article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/donald-trump-doesnt-understand-american-soft-power_us_5934a189e4b0649fff211a96 access all his HP articles at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/author/taylor-dibbert   and follow him on Twitter @taylordibbert.

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Review — SPIES AND DESERTERS by Martin Ganzglass (Somalia)

  Spies and Deserters: A Novel of American Revolution by Martin R. Ganzglass (Somalia 1966-68) Peace Corps Writers Books April 2016 378 pages $14.95 (paperback) Reviewed by William Seraile (Ethiopia 1963–65) • MARTIN GANZGLASS, AN ACCOMPLISHED NOVELIST, has crafted a well-researched and easy-to-read novel about the American war for independence. Unlike the traditional story of freedom loving Americans chafing under the rule of the British crown, Ganzglass shows that the struggle for independence was a war of brutality, deprivation and hypocrisy. The combatants were not all white: Five thousand freed and enslaved persons of color sided with the rebels. Another four thousand served in the navy and militias acting as spies, cooks and servants in aiding the American cause. Crispus Attucks, a man of color, died in the 1770 Boston Massacre. Both Peter Salem and Salem Poor were at the Battle of Bunker Hill with the latter responsible for the death of . . .

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“Nebaj Notes: Revisiting Peace Corps Guatemala” by Taylor Dibbert (Guatemala)

  Nebaj Notes: Revisiting Peace Corps Guatemala Taylor Dibbert (Guatemala 2006–08) — freelance writer • I RECENTLY DID ONE OF THOSE “security clearance” interviews. A friend of mine listed me as a reference; he had applied for a job with a certain U.S. government agency. I’d never done an interview like this. Minutes into the conversation, I’m reminded that I know a lot about this guy (the person whose background is being ‘checked’), which really shouldn’t come as a surprise. I’ve known this person since 2006; we lived in the same rural town in Guatemala – Nebaj – for two years. We were Peace Corps volunteers. The Peace Corps is an awesome journey. Yet it’s not something that one does alone. Lasting friendships are cultivated during those highs and lows. And some of the strongest relationships are formed in one’s “site.” In our case, rather uniquely, one of the members of our Nebaj . . .

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WALLED IN, WALLED OUT published by Mary Dana Marks (Iran)

  About Walled In, Walled Out — A Young American Woman in Iran by Mary Dana Marks (Iran 1964–66) • WHILE THE UNITED STATES leaps on and off a collision course with Iran, Americans forget we have not always been enemies. This memoir is set in 1960s Iran, when the Shah reigns, American consultants abound, the word ayatollah is rarely heard, and SAVAK, Iran’s secret police, wields uncompromising power. In the west, Persia evokes images of colorful carpets, wealthy oil sheiks, and glamorous royalty. Leaders of the 1979 Iranian Revolution are in elementary school when Mary  answers  John F. Kennedy’s call to “ask what you can do for your country” and joins the Peace Corps. The setting is Kerman, a conservative provincial capital on the stark Iranian plateau where she’s assigned to teach English to high school girls. Problems soon appear. As she struggles with the basics of everyday life, Iranians . . .

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SPIES AND DESERTERS published by Martin Ganzglass (Somalia)

  About Spies and Deserters — A Novel of the American Revolution by Martin R. Ganzglass (Somalia 1966–68) SPIES AND DESERTERS FOLLOWS eighteen-year-old Will Stoner, a Lieutenant in General Henry Knox’s artillery regiment, and his friend, Private Adam Cooper, an African American in the Marblehead Mariners, from the bleak, disease ridden camp at Valley Forge through the cauldron of the summer heat of the Battle of Monmouth Courthouse, to the bloody, vicious guerrilla war between Whig and Tory militias and irregulars in southern New Jersey. By drawing on diaries, original letters, military orders and broadsheets, Spies and Deserters creates an accurate picture of the everyday lives of ordinary soldiers, merchants and farmers, women, Whigs, Loyalists and Hessians, all caught up in the revolution. Spies and Deserters is my fourth novel about the American Revolution published by Peace Corps Writers. Like the others in the series, Cannons for the Cause, Tories and Patriots, and Blood Upon . . .

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New books by Peace Corps writers — March & April 2017

  To purchase any of these books from Amazon.com — Click on the book cover, the bold book title, or the publishing format you would like — and Peace Corps Worldwide, an Amazon Associate, will receive a small remittance from your purchase that will help support the site and the annual Peace Corps Writers awards.   We are now including a one-sentence description — provided by the author — for the books listed here in hopes of encouraging readers  1) to order the book and 2) to volunteer to review it. See a book you’d like to review for Peace Corps Worldwide? Send a note to peacecorpsworldwide@gmail.com, and we’ll send you a copy along with a few instructions.   • Yovo (Peace Corps novel) by Stephen F. Dexter. Jr. (Togo 1988–91) Peace Corps Writers February 2017 434 pages $21.00 (paperback) • Walled In, Walled Out: A Young American Woman in Iran by Mary Dana Marks (Iran 1964–66) Peace Corps Writers . . .

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