Also, a quick disclaimer: review copies are typically provided or downloaded for free, and links may be affiliate links. These reviews cover the version of the book I read, not necessarily the version that’s currently available. A newer or updated version may be available – check for yourself using the links below.
Success Redefined Travel, Motherhood, & Being the Boss – Monique Alvarez
If you’ve asked whether it’s safe to travel as a woman, or how you can manage to travel, work, and be a mother at the same time, you’re in luck. With husband and two sons, Monique is here to help you travel, volunteer, and live your way. 74 simply-formatted pages start with a number of reasons on how your lives and your child(ren)’s lives are changed by traveling. There’s a good chapter explaining some mental exercises, another chapter on setting and reaching your goals, and a positive message about how parents can travel.
A really powerful quote I wanted to share (emphases in original quote):
I am forever grateful for a video that I watched when I was pregnant with my first son. It was by Esther Hicks and she said, “The greatest gift you can ever give your children is the gift of a happy mother.” In an instant, everything important because crystal clear. You see, I had been thinking of all the things I wanted to do while I was pregnant that would benefit him, and I had lists of things I wanted to teach him, and I was feeling the enormous task of growing and raising a little human being. I’d forgotten about me.
Being a happy mom.
What if I only focused on this one thing? What if every decision and every intention was actually focused on myself instead of my children. (<Gasp!> I know, you just dropped this book.) What if putting our children first and always thinking about their wellbeing was destroying our wellbeing? What if Grandma had it wrong? What would a family look like if Mom was really happy? What would kids grow up to be like if Mom was super content? What would a marriage look like if ‘the little wifey’ was arranging her life in a way that made her smile?
The author shares her own personal stories on almost every page, an inspiring way of seeing a case study. If she can do it, you can too.
Women, this book is written almost exclusively towards you. I’m a firm believer that anyone can learn and enjoy most any book out there, but the affirmations and messages here are squarely aimed at women. Chapter five on making money is a good example of good advice, delivered and worded for a specific audience. Chapter eight on leadership is an absolutely critical component to any entrepreneur’s success, and again written to women.
There are no fancy charts, pictures, or graphs to speak of. No secret hacks or shortcuts. Just clear, solid advice from one woman to another.
Eco Tours: A Collection of Interviews – Deborah Regen
We are in “the beginning of the era of ecotourism”, according to the author — a time where travelers are rejecting “mass tourism” and desiring new options for how they travel. This book holds dozens of interviews with eco-tour organizers on five continents, offering them a chance to highlight the experiences they have to offer.
A quick search revealed some of the interviews were available on the EcoTourLinQ blog, so if you’re a long-time reader of the blog you’ll notice some duplication. If you’re not, or are just now hearing of the blog for the first time, this is a chance to take in these interviews in a way you can read anywhere you go.
You’ll learn a fair bit about eco-tours available around the world and peek behind-the-scenes to see what goes into the making of a tour. The author has taken care to curate a nice selection of companies worldwide, but the onus is on you to research a company’s offerings to ensure they fit your schedule and budget. This is somewhat understandable as it’s an ever-changing and still new field, though I would have liked at least a snapshot of their current offerings.
Overall, it’s a worthy look at a growing field with enough information to assist the curious.
How To Make Money From Blogging – The Ultimate Guide to Earning a Five Figure Income From Your Blog – Sharon Gourlay
I love books that tell you exactly what to expect in the title. Sharon is the blogger behind wheressharon.com and digitalnomadwannabe.com, and her 51-page book is built on her own success making a full-time income from her websites. As you might have guessed from the title, the goal is simple: make money from your blog. Once inside, you’ll realize there are very few mentions of niche or interests. That’s based on your interests and what your research shows to be a good topic.
Having read a number of ‘make money from blogging’ books, I’m familiar with much of the generic advice: find relevant affiliates and ads, freelance for other businesses, write sponsored posts on your blog. The target reader here is someone new to the blogging world, and perhaps someone that’s a fan of Sharon’s sites and wants to emulate her success. Plenty of links head to her own sites to show an example of, say, a sponsored post, or a post with affiliate links. The book reminds you of the need to have a plan and execute — something that’s too commonly lost in the shuffle.
Along with a separate workbook to fill in answers as you go, a Facebook group is quickly gaining traction of fellow readers. While some may chafe at the thought of joining yet another online community, this one’s goal-oriented and worthy of the time you need to be an active part of it. Even as a long-time blogger, I’ve learned (or been reminded of) a few things I’ll be trying out.
German Men Sit Down To Pee – Niklas Frank and James Cave
Already in the running for the weirdest title I’ve reviewed in a while, Niklas is the “real life German” while James is the “guy behind the keyboard”. Together the book explores 50 rules / insights into German culture with gentle humor — things that might take people back but have valid reasons for being that way.
From learning about the Preis-Leistungs-Verhältnis (price to quality ratio) to the tongue twisters of Privathaftpflichtversicherung (a type of insurance that covers accidents) and Rechtschutzversicherung (a type of insurance that covers legal assistance), Germany can feel like a world all to itself. Even as a tourist, you might wonder why you can’t find your new German friend on Facebook, why everyone’s watching Tatort on Sunday nights, or why everyone rolls their eyes when you mention David Hasselhoff. This book answers questions like that.
It’s not necessary to get waist-deep in culture during a short visit to Germany, but it’s a worthy, light read on your way there. If you’ll be spending more than a few days or working with Germans in any way, consider this a must-read.
Want to get your travel book reviewed? Send it for review over at oneweirdglobe.com/review-book.
Want more books to read? Will Hatton over at the Broke Backpacker has some recommendations for books to read while travelling.
Just want to read some guides online? Ultimate Country Guides for crowd-sourced, informative guides.
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Also published on Medium.