Monday, October 4, 2010

Gossip Time....Carpe Diem

My close friends know that I love to travel. I frequently dream of selling everything and traipsing around the world. No job. No schedule. No worries. And if I ever need money for food or something like that, I want to do something cool, like be a tour guide for castles in Ireland or teach people in the desert how to ice skate (of course there would need to be ice) or drive a boat around the Mediterranean (of course there would be people inside my boat paying me to chauffeur them to Greece or wherever it is that we are going).

So when I read the back cover of Carpe Diem, written by Autumn Cornwell, I was immediately hooked:

"I've got my entire life planned out for the next ten years- including my PhD and Pulitzer Prize," claims overachiever Vassar Spore, the daughter of overachiever parents, who named her after an elite women's college. Vassar expects her sophmore summer to include both AP and AAP (Advanced Advanced Placement) classes. Suprise! Enter a world-traveling relative who sends her plans into a tailspin when she blackmails Vassar's parents into forcing their only child to backpack with her through Southeast Asia....

The term "overachiever" doesn't even come close to describing how over the top Vassar is about her academics and her incessant need to make plans and lists for everything. To be honest, I almost stopped listening (the narrator Lynde Houck does a fantastic job) to the book in the beginning because I couldn't stand Vassar's anal-I've-got-a-stick-up-my-butt character. But once Vassar was forced to leave her perfect, bubble world in North America and had to deal with roughing it in Asia the story became everything from hilarious to riveting. I don't know when I'll get the opportunity to back pack through Southeast Asia, but I feel like I vicariously experienced Vassar's adventures.

By the way, Ms. Cornwell has an awesome website (in particular check out her bio page). She's been to 22 countries! I'm so jealous.


  1. I love that her name is Vassar. I've learned that the more you plan something, the less likely it is to unfold the way you want it to. Let me rephrase that. I've noticed, but haven't learned because I keep trying. Maybe I should read this book.

  2. I'm a recovering plan-a-holic, too. Now I try to make goals instead of plans, but old habits die hard. Theresa, I should also probably read this book!

  3. Being a bit OCD myself, I think I would really enjoy reading this book.
    Nice to meet you and your blog, and thanks for the great review!

  4. Yay! Great review. You hooked me right away with this post, cause I've got the travel itch too! My hubby and I almost ditched everything and went around the world, but then we decided to be a bit more responsible and have him go to school in Hawai'i. :)
    Can't wait to read Vassar's adventure. And thanks for the tip about the bio. I love author bios!

  5. Theresa- I couldn't agree with you more
    AJ- This book is a must if you're a recovering plan-a-holic
    Lydia- thanks for dropping by. As far as reading the book, DO IT :)
    Dayana- Hawaii!! I'm so jealous :)