Original post by Unapoetessa at RavenousReaderReviews

When author Mike Nixon was younger, in 2006, he worked as a desk clerk at the Comfort Inn. He encountered people from all over the world from whom he learned many things about their different cultures. For a while, that was Mike’s dream job; but over time, his desire to be like these travelers and experience the world for himself became his dream. This is a memoir of Mike’s path to explore the world and travel as much as possible, because it lit a flame inside of him that would not be satisfied in any other way. In Nixon’s own words: “Meeting a person is more than just encountering a physical being who can speak, make us laugh, and keep us company. It’s coming into contact with someone made from millions of experiences, someone who feels and exists, and someone who is more than what we see on the outside—and definitely more than what they show us…Traveling is a great way to discover your passion…Travel as much as you can. The purpose of travel is to get away from what you’re used to. Travel is about exposing yourself to people, environments, and situations you normally wouldn’t consider. Doing so will open you up to new ideas, unique ways of seeing the world, and different ways of experiencing life. Likewise, you’ll gain skills, knowledge, and values that’ll assist you in facing everyday challenges.” This book is the memoir of Nixon’s various jobs and travels, and the friendships, “family,” experiences, places, cultures, values, food, and more he experienced along the way.

I am a person who believes that to learn about and appreciate different cultures, to see each other not as strangers but as humans experiencing this life together, is a true blessing in life. We may have different styles, colors, languages, etc., but we still are all beings with the same basic human needs, exactly same under the surface, if you will. I believe that Mike’s experiences serve to prove my point. The more we learn about those we perceive as different, the less fear we will experience. I believe it is the fear of those who are different which is the root cause of prejudice and humans wanting to hurt each other. Quoting Shakespeare from “The Merchant of Venice” (Act III, scene I): “If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die?…” While a little repetitious in some chapters, this was a very enjoyable read about one man’s experience learning about the places where he travelled and people he met and befriended from each region. It’s a beautiful story about humankind, and well worth the time it takes to read; I would recommend it to all who love travel, people, and learning about other cultures.

I’d like to thank BookSirens, Mike Nixon, and Palmetto Publishing for the ability to read and review this ARC.