Archive - March 2018

1
Michael Meyer’s interview in The Writer’s Chronicle (China)
2
New books by Peace Corps writers — February 2018
3
Review — TRAVELS IN SOUTH AMERICA by Lawrence Lihosit (Honduras)
4
Talking to Gabriel Krieshok (Madagascar)
5
Trumps’ Republican Political Appointees at the Peace Corps
6
Nominations for Best Peace Corps Book of 2017
7
Two Paraguayan Short Stories by Mark Jacobs (Paraguay)
8
Review — SLACKER’S CONFESSION by Lawrence Lihosit (Honduras)
9
Review — THE FARM ON THE RIVER OF EMERALDS by Moritz Thomsen (Ecuador)
10
Did you know this PCV? (Anywhere)

Michael Meyer’s interview in The Writer’s Chronicle (China)

  The March/April 2018 of The Writer’s Chronicle, the publication of the Association of Writers & Writing Programs, carries a long interview entitled “Talking China With Michael Meyer.” Meyer an associate professor of creative nonfiction writing at the University of Pittsburgh, is the author of the recently published  The Road to Sleeping Dragon. His two earlier books are In Manchuria: A Village Called Wasteland and the Transformation of Rural China and The Last Days of Old Beijing. Click for a subscription to The Writer’s Chronicle  

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New books by Peace Corps writers — February 2018

  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 Marian at peacecorpsworldwide@gmail.com, and we’ll send you a copy along with a few instructions. • The Delight of Being Ordinary: A Road Trip with the Pope and the Dalai Lama by Roland Merullo (Micronesia 1979–80) Vintage March 2018 384 pages $17.00 (paperback), $26.95 (hard cover), $9.99 (Kindle) (Novel) A playful, eloquent, and life-affirming novel . . .

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Review — TRAVELS IN SOUTH AMERICA by Lawrence Lihosit (Honduras)

  Rob Thurston (Venezuela 1968–70; staff: Belize, Honduras 1972–77 ) wrote . . . I recently read Lawrence Lihosit’s book Travels in South America and submitted a review on Amazon.com. I liked the book  a lot, having been to many of the places he, his wife and sister-in-law traveled to in 1988. My late wife (Juanita Thurston (Venezuela 1968-70) and I took a similar trip right after our Peace Corps assignment in Venezuela (January 1970), then returned to work and live in Bolivia with USAID from 1980-85, just before Lawrence made his trip. Consequently, the account resonated with me. • Travels in South America by Lawrence F. Lihosit (Honduras 1975–77) CreateSpace Dec 2017 – second edition 418 pages $22.95 (paperback) This is not your normal travelogue, and once opened its hard to put down. In 1988 Lawrence Lihosit, his Mexican wife, Margarita, and sister-in-law, Licha, take the reader far beyond notable sites and historical . . .

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Talking to Gabriel Krieshok (Madagascar)

Thanks to a “heads up” from Joanne Roll (Colombia 1963-65) who sent me this link:  https://medium.com/@gabrielkrieshok/the-future-of-the-peace-corps-and-how-to-stop-it-f2e0fe3aff50 I read about Gabriel Krieshok former lead of #ICT4D@PeaceCorps HQ. On his blog, Gabriel had written: For the first time in ten years, I have no official connection to the Peace Corps, and I have felt an itch to reflect on this journey and some observations that have stuck with me. I must first say—that this process of moving on has been a little surreal. The nature of my relationship to the institution has changed over the years, through the various roles I’ve been lucky to have—volunteer, campus recruiter, and most recently as a staff member in Washington, D.C., where I voluntarily stepped down after 5 years of service just last month. After checking out his site, I got in touch with Gabriel, wanting to know more about what he had done with the . . .

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Trumps’ Republican Political Appointees at the Peace Corps

Thanks to a ‘heads up’ by Meisha Robinson (Benin 2000-02) NPCA February 2018 Patrick Young, Associate Director for Global Operations Patrick Young joins the Peace Corps as Associate Director for Global Operations. He most recently served as the Acting Chief of Staff for the Office of Personnel Management during a period of significant transition. Prior to public service, Patrick gained extensive experience in operations as well as project and organizational management as an entrepreneur and business owner. Patrick has managed projects and teams for government, private sector, and non-profit clients both international and domestic. Patrick has a master’s degree from George Washington University. Joel Frushone, Associate Director for External Affairs–(Lesotho 1995-97) Joel Frushone joins the Peace Corps as Associate Director for External Affairs after serving for four months as our Director of Communications. Joel brings over 20 years of experience in Africa, where he lived for nearly 10 years. Most recently, . . .

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Nominations for Best Peace Corps Book of 2017

To further fulfill its goals to encourage, recognize and promote Peace Corps writers, RPCV Writers & Readers, the newsletter that was the precursor of PeaceCorpsWriters.org and PeaceCorpsWorldwide.org, presented its first annual awards for outstanding writing in 1990. A total of 143 awards have been given since that time. Winners receive a certificate and small cash award. When possible, Peace Corps Writers Awards are presented at the RPCV Conference Awards Ceremony. Next year, the Awards will be announced at the NPCA Conference at Shawnee, PA in late August. Nominate your favorite Peace Corps book published in 2017 by sending an email to: jcoyneone@gmail.com The Awards THE MARIA THOMAS FICTION AWARD, first presented in 1990, is named after the novelist Maria Thomas [Roberta Worrick (Ethiopia 1971–73)] who was the author of the well-reviewed novel Antonia Saw the Oryx First, and two collections of short stories, Come to Africa and Save Your Marriage: And Other Stories and African Visas: A Novella and . . .

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Two Paraguayan Short Stories by Mark Jacobs (Paraguay)

The Intimate Other In “Place of Rest,” Teddy Wilson decides he wants to die in Paraguay. In “Old School,” Rowen Royce makes the decision to live there. For both American characters, Paraguay has become the intimate other. It is a place to which they do not belong but are irresistibly drawn. The choice they make is both conscious and blind. They are impelled. Choosing a largely rural, semi-tropical, landlocked country with a history of problematic government calls for a leap of faith, but faith in what? Neither Teddy nor Rowen would put it this way, but they trust in Paraguay’s otherness, which despite differences of temperament and experience they both find unspeakably beautiful. In an act of defiant identification they ally themselves with the dazzled streets of Asunción summer, the dizzying green sweep of countryside. The way dust hangs in the air over a dirt road down which cowboys have . . .

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Review — SLACKER’S CONFESSION by Lawrence Lihosit (Honduras)

  Slacker’s Confession: Essays and Sketches By Lawrence F. Lihosit (Honduras 1975-77) CreateSpace 184 pages January 2018 $18.95 (paperback) Reviewed by Darcy Meijer (Gabon 1982-84) • Lawrence F. Lihosit’s latest book is a simple delight. His dozens of sketches make drawing look easy, and the essays are conversational and candid. His work and travels have taken him to Central and South America, and after eight years he carried home sketchbooks filled with 150 drawings and essays on art, travel, inspiration and technique. Slacker’s Confession is a tidy book in terms of scope and sequence: four parts, each with essay and sketches. Part I comprises Lihosit’s title essay and sketches from Uruguay, Argentina and Chile; part II his essay “Pen to Paper” and sketches from Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador; part III “Drawing Outdoors” and sketches from Panama, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala; Part IV “Materials” and sketches from Caribbean and South . . .

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Review — THE FARM ON THE RIVER OF EMERALDS by Moritz Thomsen (Ecuador)

  The Farm on the River of Emeralds by Moritz Thomsen (Ecuador 1965-67) Vintage Departuers 344 pages July 1989 $9.99 (paperback) Reviewed by Mark D. Walker (Guatemala 1971-73) • While perusing my favorite books above my desk today, I realized that I’d never reviewed a book of my favorite Returned Peace Corps Volunteer, Moritz Thomsen. He is best known for Living Poor, published in 1969, which is rated as one of the best Returned Peace Corps Volunteer memoirs of all time.  My personal favorite is The Farm on the River of Emeralds, the sequel, which tells a tale of endless reverses as a part owner of a farm on the northwestern coast of Ecuador—close to a hot, muggy, dirty, fishing village. The author struggles with his much younger, semi-literate black Ecuadorian partner, Ramon, and his wife Esther, battling nature, history and tradition in his efforts to develop a tropical farm in . . .

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