4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
read this great book,
This review is from: Mother Tongues: Travels through Tribal Europe (Paperback)
I love this book. It weaves together two strands, about the endangered minorities of Europe, and about travelling quite rough with a young family over a period of 18 months. Each really enhances the other. The story is about Helena Drysdale and her husband and two daughters (one still a baby) who set off in a camper van to discover more about the little-known peoples of Europe - the Sami, Basques, Corsicans and so on. She immersed herself in these peoples' culture, discovering all she could about what makes them tick: their languages, history, literature, music. But when the story threatens to get bogged down in esoteric details of linguistics, you cut back to daily family life. This acts as a sort of leavening - it lightens the tone, and is often very funny.
I have never raad a book like this before, which is so ambitious in its scope - covering most of western Europe. Each chapter is almost like a book in its own right, and has been thoroughly researched, while never being too heavy.
I recommend it to anyone who is interested in the endangered peoples of Europe, whose lives are at risk almsot as much as the endangered plants and animals we hear so much more about.