The Defining Decade

'Self-help' books are usually not my cup of tea but I'm not entirely sure if you can call this that. What do you call a book that is more all-knowing mentor/confidant/friend than book? The Defining Decade seemed to reach into my soul and understood all the issues and confusion I was dealing with or puzzled by, and offered a perspective on things I didn't even know I should be thinking about.

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the witch doesn't burn in this one

This isn't a poetry book that laments a love lost, or the emotions that follow a breakup. This is a book that take's charge of the energy and power behind womankind and celebrates the incredible ferocity of that power. 

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Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

At the core of this novel is a question of cultural identity. What does it mean to be Japanese? What does it mean to be American? What does it mean to be an Asian American? Do those identities necessarily conflict? 

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Pachinko

This novel is a vivid and emotional depiction of the hardships and terrors that Korean immigrants (and the generations that followed) faced in Japan. At the same time, it pays homage to the accomplishments of each subsequent generation, and hammers home the importance of family and personal connection. 

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My Family and Other Animals

This little novel is incredibly vibrant. There isn't much of a plot - instead it's a bunch of funny stories pieced together with beautiful descriptions of the Greek countryside that the author (Gerald Durrell) experienced growing up. I highly recommend this book to anyone who dreams of living in a foreign land, or who is looking to fall in love with reading again. 

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