Sunday, November 24, 2013

Don't Forget The Soap

Book Information

At the center of many good stories – inspiring, entertaining, admittedly corny – is Marie Claire Lim Moore. Ask her about the time she and her family sat down with former Philippine President Corazon Aquino. Or the time she built houses in Mexico alongside former American President Jimmy Carter. Equally engaging are her every day experiences and perspective on life. You will be interested to hear what she thinks is a relationship “deal breaker” or why Christmas should be regulated or why kids shouldn’t say, “I’m bored.”

Don’t Forget the Soap is a collection of anecdotes from different points in Claire’s life: stories from the tight-knit Filipino community in Vancouver mix with memories of her move to New York, experiences at Yale and travels as a young executive. Underlying this narrative is the story of a global citizen who does not want to forget the fundamental values that come along with the “immigrant experience” as she and her husband raise their children in the increasingly glitzy expat bubble of Singapore. Her parents continue to remain a big influence in her life and her mother’s reminders a grounding force. These stories will warm the heart and resonate with people of any culture.

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Book Review

It is easy to judge a book prior to reading it. Admittedly, I had my doubts upon receiving a copy as to the extent of my interest on reading it. I thought it was just one of those narcissistic story-telling type of books where it alienates the audience/reader to the story the author speaks. It was however another human mistake to have judged so quickly without actually knowing because it is infact the opposite. As I went deep in to reading I found myself more and more engaged and involved. Even my sister found herself immersing in the book after days of just scanning through the pages. Yes it talks of a life of an individual- particularly the author Ms.Marie Claire's hard but blessed life as an immigrant family in differing parts of the world- but it also talks about familiar stories; crazy family gatherings, family tradition, everyday family conversations one also hears in their own home, advice and nags we hear from our mothers and so on. It pokes on familial emotions we are all familiar with. 

From time to time I found myslef grinning reading a line or two hearing in the back of my mind my family's version of the similar if not entirely the same scenario. It is an also refreshing tale-telling of a story of Filipinos living abroad. It is different in a sense that it is heart-warming in its realness using humor and wit to narrate challenges and viewpoint. However, it is of course of a more blessed viewpoint compared to other OFW stories which at some points make it a little non-relatable. Inspiring, nonetheless. Special mention to the chapter where the title was duly explained sewing all sense together. 

I encourage you to give this book a try not only because I am encouraging you to support Filipino authors and Philippine literature but because it's a very Filipino piece that every family could almost relate to.

Watch out for the excerpt reveal of Don't Forget the Soap, Interview with the author and the amazing giveaway!

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