Leila Hadley A Journey with Elsa Cloud

ISBN 13: 9780140275377

A Journey with Elsa Cloud

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9780140275377: A Journey with Elsa Cloud

Ravishing . . . No traveler, armchair or otherwise, should be deprived of this book’s ripe pleasures.”—Publishers Weekly
 
“In prose as heady as an old Delhi spice market, Leila Hadley invites us along on . . . a mother’s journey in search of her daughter, and herself.”—The Washington Post Book World
 
In a memoir that Norman Mailer called “the best travel book I’ve ever read,” Leila Hadley records a journey to India inspired both by her lifelong love of travel and by a desire to reconcile with her estranged daughter Veronica, who was living in India and studying Buddhism. The book’s title comes from Veronica’s remark as a young girl that she wanted to be “the sea, the jungle, or else a cloud,” thereby earning her the homonymic endearment of Elsa Cloud. A Journey with Elsa Cloud describes the sensuous delights of India; explains sexual mores and myths of India; and speaks tellingly about a memorable cast of characters, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama. A Journey with Elsa Cloud is the record of a journey, a love story, and a beautiful work of art.

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Review:

When she was young, Leila Hadley's grandmother told her that James Boswell, her great-great-great-great-great-grandfather, "may have been naughty, indiscreet, and intemperate, but he was an excellent journalist." Born to be a traveler and writer, Hadley has spent her life exploring India and Africa, the Middle East and Asia, and writing about it with luminous intelligence, unsparing insight, and earthy wit. This is an account of Hadley's tour across India with her estranged daughter. She evokes the smells, fruits, and colors of India, all the while trying to work out a new relationship with Veronica. Hers is one of the few voices that can do justice to India, with its inundation of the senses, history, art, bazaars, and humanity. Add to that the gentle inclusion of stories--her childhood, failed marriages, mothering traumas--and you've got a stirring travelogue and a powerfully beautiful memoir.

About the Author:

Leila Hadley is a cofounder of Wings Trust, dedicated to literary and educational projects in the field of women's studies; a consulting editor for Tricycle: The Buddhist Review; and an elected member of PEN and the Explorers Club. She is the author of the award-winning Give Me the World, A Fielding's Guide to Traveling with Children in Europe, and other books. She lives in New York.

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