About a year ago, I began editing a friend’s manuscript about her travels on a homestay program in Estonia in the late 1990s. I’m happy to announce that the book, Once Around the Room: Discovering Estonia, is now available in paperback (and soon in Kindle and Nook formats) on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Once-Around-Room-Discovering-Estonia/dp/0982902808 A portion of the book’s proceeds will benefit the International 4-H Youth Exchange Program, a cultural exchange program in which 4-H alumni and other young adults live with host families in other countries to increase global awareness, develop independent study interests, and improve language skills.
About the BOOK
In the autumn of 1995, while still in college, Jennifer Doherty applied to a program that would change her life. Winning a spot on the International Four-H Youth Exchange program, an immersive homestay experience abroad, she left behind her rural Colorado ranching roots and a close-knit college community in the South to travel to Estonia for six months, staying with host families and learning the country’s language, traditions, and charms.
Arriving in Estonia fewer than ten years after the fall of Communism, Doherty describes a country straining to catch up with the West while wrestling with its turbulent history under Soviet rule. Through her travels around the country and the Baltic region, striking contrasts emerge, captured in candid detail: women sweep the sidewalks in front of Soviet-era concrete apartment buildings with twig brooms while tourists hustle to the medieval Old Town a few blocks away.
As it spirits readers around Estonia on a journey filled with long talks at kitchen tables, sauna soaks, blueberry-picking in the forest, and haymaking in the countryside, Once Around the Room offers an intimate look at the delights and quirks of becoming immersed in a foreign country. Chronicling the struggle to understand the philosophical and practical goals of cultural exchange as well as the struggle to strengthen one’s faith in a foreign country, Doherty composes a sensitive and poignant portrayal of the risks and rewards of fully immersing yourself in another culture, heart and soul.
About the Author
A founding faculty member and the assistant principal of an award-winning charter high school in Colorado Springs, Jennifer Doherty has worked in secondary education for the last twelve years. In addition to writing and teaching English, she loves traveling, skiing the Rockies, scrapbooking, and visiting her nephews on the cattle ranch that has been in her family for six generations. Recently married, Jennifer and her husband live in northern New Mexico.
About DEADRISE BOOKS
Deadrise Books is a micropublisher of travel-oriented nonfiction.