On Top Of The World: Review By Joel Savage

Novel

An inspirational and adventurous book, empowered by the values of determination, understanding, and perseverance. Although, the entire book is based on fiction, the experiences, and the lessons continue to live with us every day, as a guide for our own success

Love is strange and complicated. It becomes more complicated when combined with diverse careers and the choices we make. The euphoria can make you feel disorganized and restless and sometimes put one in emotional complex situations.
It’s been three years since Belle walks out of the life of Scrooje but many times she finds herself thinking about him feeling a familiar smile sweeps across her face. That’s something she wants to avoid sometimes but assured herself nothing wrong thinking about ex-lover.At times, things don’t go the way she wants. As the ring girl at her parents’ vow renewal, she stumbles, falls into the grass and lost the rings. That wasn’t the end. As a ballerina, despite being the best in her class, the day of the recital something went wrong as she tumbles down like Humpty Dumpty.

Belle wouldn’t let setbacks be a stumbling block on her chosen path to success. She sees something different in her which motivates her. In the field of music, together with Scrooje and his best friend Marley they rise to success, finding themselves instantly on top of the world.

They enjoyed the best part of life as celebrities. Out of misfortunes come fortune or just greed? Marley dies in a tragic accident and Scrooje uses it as an opportunity to exploit Marley. He sells millions of records and lives a false life by cheating other artists.

The chapter is 28, “Money like Trump, I want that money like Trump. Hey, like I said, it’s only entertainment people, sheds light on a scene that took place during one of the political campaigns of Donald Trump.

My favorite part of the book is at page 166: “Staying up late, reading those books to try and feel what he’d felt and like he’d thought was the reason I’d gotten my first pair of double-wide double thick glasses in the first place. By the time I got to high school, those late night reading binges had instilled a love of books in me.”

‘Top Of The World,’ is an inspirational and adventurous book, empowered by the values of determination, understanding, and perseverance. Although, the entire book is based on fiction, the experiences, and the lessons continue to live with us every day, as a guide for our own success.

 

http://amzn.to/2dG2NyQ

Barfield School: Book Review By Joel Savage

Book

The first novel in the trilogy, CALL OF FRANCE, Barfield School. The book is a dramatized portrayal of some of the things which led the author to become a longstanding expat in a country he’s always felt an irresistible attraction for

It’s great to be young because history reveals an entertaining account and discipline based on our lives as students while at school. When reading author Barry A Whittingham’s ‘Barfield School’ the reference sources and some of the scenes engaged my thoughts, reminding me of the great old days at school as the story unfolds.

‘Headmaster Fowler was almost unanimously disliked by his teaching staff and he was even detested by some.’ Are we familiar with such experience at school? This is my first point of interest in this book because at school many hate the authority for mistakenly taken discipline as punishment.

At chapter 26, page 140, the writer shares an interesting story about Christmas festivities. Like many families, we used occasions to solve family issues and here worried Michael knew about the existing tensions between his father and grandfather, hoping the Christmas family gathering would solve this problem which has given him worries for some time, surprisingly, everything went well as expected.

This incredible book is written in the form which suits both adults and teenagers as the author endeavors to bring to the attention of readers common inevitable family problems and how easily they could be solved, above all the choices we make in our lives and careers after leaving school, in the midst of hatred while under discipline.

‘Barfield School’ is arguably one of the best books I have ever read.  It’s not only inspiring but educative on moral grounds. I have received many books but I don’t often post reviews. Bringing this review to the attention of book lovers means ‘Barfield School’ is a perfectly written book I will recommend to readers.

https://www.amazon.com/Barfield-School-CALL-FRANCE-1/dp/2954302682/https://www.amazon.com/Barfield-School-CALL-FRANCE-1/dp/2954302682/

#POEMS: OUT OF THE SILENT BREATH

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Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha’s poems portray images that stare us right in the face. Images of love, joy, death, pain, challenges, violation, and freedom. She writes in a language that’s rich in imagery, earthy, honest, vulnerable, yet full of the promise of hope, of loving and of Grace. A collection of light and dark soulful prose. 

Somewhere, sometimes, life takes us through difficult, unexpected pathways that bring us to the edge of a precipice. These life-lessons that knock us down to our knees also become turning and redeeming points in our lives. They open our eyes to the important things and make us to question or find our purpose.

They drive us to wake up, to make the conscious choice to rise and step out and to live fully in the present moments that life brings us. It is the things that we deeply love that saves our sanity in these moments and gives us reason to hope, to open the doors and to fly.

Out of the silent breath is a vivid compilation of joyful, melancholic and hopeful prose through different walks of life.

The Author

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Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha is a fellow blogger who is originally from Nigeria.  Her blog is A Cooking Pot and Twisted Tales.  She uses this platform to support fellow bloggers and to raise awareness of the many  ongoing cultural inequalities and problems in the world.  Here is Jacqueline’s story in her own words:

I like to describe myself as a Jacqueline of all trade and a mistress of nothing. Everything is work-in-progress in my life, including me. Nothing is finished for, there’s always room for more improvement.

If all is finished, then that means that I am done on this side of the great divide. I believe that I still have a pretty long way to go with hammering myself into a worthy state before toddling off to sing angelic lullabies.

I was born in Nigeria in the mid 70’s, to a family with one of the best parents that I could have ever asked for.

My growing up years was in University of Nigeria, Nsukka campus. A close-knit community where everyone knew what you had for breakfast, lunch and dinner and pretty much any shenanigans that you got up to. Back then, an honorary auntie could feel enough righteous indignation and would help to straighten you out before sending you home to your parents who will cement the straightening with their own dose of reprimanding.

As a young lady in High school, I was involved in a number of social and community activities. From Church work to participating in dramas at the local theatre, speaking at regular debate contests and contribution to the young writer’s club. At the initial stage, these artistic flairs propelled my interest to further my university education in Theatre or Communication Arts, however, due to the general inclination back then, that artists in Nigeria had no bright future, I leaned towards studying law.

My education in law was closely followed by several professional courses, in Public Relations, Chartered Secretary, and Administrators, an associate degree in the French Language as well as a Diploma in Translation. French is a language that I find not only romantic, but everything just sounds decadently delicious in French even when they are shouting.

Fast forward to my career path and like I had indicated right from the onset, I have done so many things.

I started my working life at The Embassy of Tunisia in Lagos as the Personal Assistant to the Ambassador and after a brief stint in France, I returned and joined the Embassy of France also in Lagos.

My position working with the Cultural Attaché to the Embassy of France paved an opportunity to join The Delegation of the European Union in Abuja, Nigeria. It was a job that offered a lot of training and travel opportunities and during this point in time, I met my dear husband, who whisked me off to the altar after a six-month whirlwind courtship. Our union will turn 16 years in November and we are blessed with three beautiful children.

The natural process of having babies with a stillbirth and several miscarriages in-between meant juggling family life along with my career, cycling through different jobs as I sought to find that which suited my family lifestyle a lot better.

I held job positions ranging from Archivist, Executive Assistant, Personal Assistant, Public Relations Officer, Administrative Manager, Records Manager to School Registrar.

http://www.amazon.com/Out-Silent-Breath-Jacqueline-Oby-Ikocha-ebook/dp/B01EYN38ES

 

Why I Will Not Sell My Blog For Money

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We often hear that: The pen is mightier than the sword, truth is bitter than the bile etc. These sayings are true. I just love to write but never aware that many of my articles are like a sharp arrow piercing through the flesh of the ‘Evildoers.’

On April 16, 2016, I posted an article entitled  ‘Why I Stopped Writing For Diplomatic Aspects Newspaper.’ The article was about“Holland’s Professor Johan Van Dongen Challenging Belgium’s Scientist Guido van der Groen over the origins of Ebola, which was submitted to the editor of Diplomatic Aspects Newspaper and the article was published.

Unknowing after the publication, Belgium’s fears of reprisal and exposure of the truth over the two tied diseases, secretly contacted the editor without my knowledge to remove the article from the web. This is a significant evidence that an article can make bad people in our society uncomfortable. Yes, some articles sting more than the scorpion.

I have received many messages from Google alert, Facebook and other apps I have registered people trying to crawl or hack into my blog. Why are they making such efforts to enter my blog? Because this blog has certain  articles from the Dutch Microsurgeon and scientist Johan Van Dongen and writer Joel Savage which are making those in the corrupt health sectors and some politicians uncomfortable. Our articles are revealing too much of certain facts which supposed to be secret or confidential documents.

I can’t count the number of times I’ve changed my password, trying to secure and protect my blog against those unseen cyber thieves and rogues. Now that we know (Johan Van Dongen and Joel Savage) we shall continue to make life harder and uncomfortable for them. Even though I’ve no penny in my pocket, I will not sell my soul for money.

If you fear to die, the reason you wouldn’t like to speak against injustice, corruption, crime, including Aids and Ebola crimes, death will find you where ever you’ve hidden to take you away. Die in truth and dignity not in lies and hypocrisy. That’s our (Johan Van Dongen and Joel Savage) philosophy.

ARE YOU READY TO WRITE YOUR OWN OBITUARY?

Typewriter. 3

BY

Mila Turner is writing an obituary. Her own. After helping put one together for her stepfather as his Alzheimer’s disease worsened, she realized just how important it was to be able to contribute to one’s final testament while still alive and able to do so. “I don’t want anyone to ever have to guess who I was or what I accomplished,” Turner says. “I work too hard in this life to be misunderstood after death.”

As a genealogist and family historian, Turner probably has a finer sense of the value of remembrance and good recordkeeping than most, including what can make standard obituaries these days “quite boring.” But Turner is also in good health, and … she is only 27 years old.

With each passing day, it is becoming an even better time to die. At least if you’re concerned about being remembered in all of your idiosyncratic, mango-eating, dickey-wearing glory. With each selfie your phone collects, each recipe you share on Facebook, each thought you expel into cyberspace, you are amassing not only a larger digital footprint, but also a fuller testimony of what it means to be you. What will be made of this voluminous material, including who might tell your story when you go. Well, that’s a rather good story itself — and one with just as uncertain a future.

Is it time then to start thinking about writing the obit for the obituary itself?

For years, we’ve relied on the obituary to Offical spoeRecordkeeping,  be death’s official spokesperson, to give some closure and meaning to our famous, infamous or wonderfully ordinary lives. But many of those on the “dead beat” — the professional obit writers who traffic daily in death so as to help us better appreciate life — are increasingly shuffling off their mortal toil, as layoffs, downsizing and other changes continue to engulf the world of print media.

Meantime, popular memorial websites such as Legacy.com, which now claims over 24 million monthly unique visitors and a database of over 20 million obituaries, continue to expand in size and — along with the Facebook pages of the departed — are quickly becoming the go-to sites for digital condolences and remembrances. Another new player in the field, the self-penned obituaries or “selfie obits” such as Turner’s, continue to multiply.

Is it time then to start thinking about writing the obit for the obituary itself? The First Rule of the Obit, after all, is “Be prepared.” Most significant obits are drafted well in advance of their subject’s actual demise, so why not start assembling the obituary’s file if it is indeed at risk of expiring?

To do so, though, it helps to know a little something about its next of kin. And when you make the relevant inquiries, you run square into an online population that is buzzing with new approaches to death, not to mention into the Second Rule of the Obit: Never pronounce someone dead before their time.

The Obituary, a Pioneer Who Built a Worldwide Following

Full article: http://www.ozy.com/fast-forward/are-you-ready-to-write-your-own-obituary/

Great Writers On The Power Of Music

susanSusan Sontag

Article BY MARIA POPOVA

Kurt Vonnegut, Susan Sontag, Aldous Huxley, Oliver Sacks, Walt Whitman, Virginia Woolf, Friedrich Nietzsche, and more.

“Music is the best means we have of digesting time,” Igor Stravinsky once remarked (a remark often misattributed to W.H. Auden). “Music is the sound wave of the soul,” the wise and wonderful Morley observed. Psychologists have studied why playing music benefits your brain more than any other activity and how listening to music enraptures the brain. But, more than that, music works over the human spirit and stands as a supreme manifestation of our very humanity — something Carl Sagan knew when he sent the Golden Record into the cosmos as a representation of the most universal truths of our civilization.

Gathered here are uncommonly beautiful reflections on the singular power of music by some of humanity’s greatest writers, collected over years of reading — please enjoy.

Susan Sontag spent the majority of her adult life reading between eight and ten hours a day, and never fewer than four. Her intense love of literature was paralleled by a commensurate love of music. In a diary entry found in Reborn: Journals and Notebooks, 1947–1963 (public library) — the spectacular volume that gave us young Sontag on personal growth, art, marriage, the four people a great writer must be, and her duties for being a twenty-something — she writes at age 15:

Music is at once the most wonderful, the most alive of all the arts — it is the most abstract, the most perfect, the most pure — and the most sensual. I listen with my body and it is my body that aches in response to the passion and pathos embodied in this music.

Link to full article: http://goo.gl/ttU1ok

“Life Is Very Hard. The Only People Who Really Live Are Those Who Are Harder Than Life Itself.”

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There are hundreds of definitions about ‘Life,’ but none gives me its true meaning, than this quote by author Nawal El Salaawi, “Life is very hard. The only people who really live are those who are harder than life itself.”  But who is this woman?

Nawal El Saadiaw has been pilloried, censored, imprisoned and exiled for her refusal to accept the oppression imposed on women by gender and class.

In her life and in her writings, this struggle against sexual discrimination has always been linked to a struggle against all forms of oppression: religious, racial, colonial and neo-colonial.

In 1969, she published her first work of non-fiction, Women and Sex ; in 1972, her writings and her struggles led to her dismissal from her job.

From then on there was no respite; imprisonment under Sadat in 1981 was the culmination of the long war she had fought for Egyptian women’s social and intellectual freedom. A Daughter of Isis is the autobiography of this extraordinary woman.

Author Nawal El Salaawi

Zero 5Nawal El Saadawi, also spelled Nawāl al-Saʿdāwī   (born Oct. 27, 1931, Kafr Ṭaḥlah, Egypt), Egyptian public health physician, psychiatrist, author, and advocate of women’s rights. Sometimes described as “the Simone de Beauvoir of the Arab world,” El Saadawi was a feminist whose writings and professional career were dedicated to political and sexual rights for women.El Saadawi was educated at Cairo University (M.D., 1955), Columbia University in New York (M.P.H., 1966), and ʿAyn Shams University in Cairo (where she performed psychiatric research in 1972–74). In 1955–65 she worked as a physician at Cairo University and in the Egyptian ministry of health, and in 1966 she became the director-general of the health education department within the ministry.

In 1968 she founded Health magazine, which was shut down by Egyptian authorities several years later, and in 1972 she was expelled from her professional position in the ministry of health because of her book Al-marʾah wa al-jins (1969; Women and Sex), which was condemned by religious and political authorities.

El Saadawi was jailed in September 1981, and during the two months of her imprisonment she wrote Mudhakkirāt fī sijn al-nisāʾ (1984; Memoirs from the Women’s Prison) on a roll of toilet paper using a smuggled cosmetic pencil.

In 1982 El Saadawi founded the Arab Women’s Solidarity Association (AWSA) and later served as editor of the organization’s publication, Al-nūn. In 1991 the government closed down Al-nūn and then, several months later, AWSA itself. Due to her outspoken views, El Saadawi continued to face frequent legal challenges from political and religious opponents, including accusations of apostasy.

In 2002 a legal attempt was made by an Islamist lawyer to forcibly divorce her from her husband, and in May 2008 she won a case that had been brought against her by al-Azhar University, the major centre of Islamic learning, that included charges of apostasy and heresy.

El Saadawi’s novels, short stories, and nonfiction deal chiefly with the status of Arab women, as inMudhakkirāt tabībah (1960; Memoirs of a Woman Doctor), Al-khayt wa al-jidār (1972; The Thread and the Wall), Al-wajh al-ʿarī lī al-marʾah al-arabiyyah (1977; The Hidden Face of Eve: Women in the Arab World), Al-ḥubb fī zaman al-nafṭ (1993; Love in the Kingdom of Oil), and Al-riwāyah (2004; The Novel).

The oppression of women by men through religion is the underlying theme of El Saadawi’s novel set in a mental institution, Jannāt wa Iblīs (1992; Jannāt and Iblīs). The female protagonists are Jannāt, whose name is the plural of the Arabic word for paradise, and Iblīs, whose name refers to the devil.

http://goo.gl/HrS2nD