Archive - October 16, 2011

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Review of Jim McConkey's To The Far Side of Planet Earth

Review of Jim McConkey's To The Far Side of Planet Earth

To The Far Side of Planet Earth: A Peace Corps Memoir by Jim McConkey (India 1967-69) Infinity Publishing $17.95 (paperback) 342 pages August 2011 Reviewed by Reilly Ridgell (Micronesia 1971–73) AS MOST WRITERS KNOW there is nothing more important than the firsts: the first chapter, the first page, the first paragraph, the first sentence, and sometimes even the first word. These are so important because they either catch the reader’s attention, hooking him or her so they’ll want to read on, or else turn the reader off, and they don’t buy and read the book. Jim McConkey learned that lesson well, and his first chapter is a clinic on how to capture a reader’s interest while setting up the rest of the book as well. What McConkey has created here is sort of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance meets Paul Theroux. Like a good travel writer, McConkey takes . . .

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