Saturday, July 2, 2011

Married to Bhutan: How One Woman Got Lost, Said "I Do," and Found Bliss

Married to Bhutan: How One Woman Got Lost, Said "I Do," and Found Bliss
Linda Leaming
Paperback: 264 pages
Publisher: Hay House (April 1, 2011)
read and reviewed ARC, courtesy of Amazon Vine Program
4.5/5 stars

In Married to Bhutan, Leaming tells of how she visited Bhutan, fell in love with the country, and sold everything she had to move there. She became a volunteer English teacher at an art school, striving to become part of the community and always finding new reasons to love Bhutan. Then, something unexpected happened: she and an artist at the school fell in love with each other and begin a traditional Bhutanese courtship that culminated in marriage. Leaming's love for Bhutan and her love for her new husband, Phurba, compliment each other and give her the emotional strength she needed as she continued to adjust to her new country.

Leaming writes about Bhutan as one writes of their beloved; it so obvious from her prose how deeply affected she is by the people, terrain and culture around her. She weaves this love into the history and stories she tells, and her love for Phurba adds to the depth of what she shares.

She often compares Bhutan to the U.S., but never in a condescending way, Instead of making a judgment on one way or the other, she simply presents the two ways and leaves it to the reader to form any opinions.

Married to Bhutan is a gentle book, and one that makes the reader laugh, cry and think. Most of all, though, the reader walks away feeling glad to have witnessed such a beautiful love story.

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