The Tenth Island by Diana Marcum

The Tenth Island

From a Pulitzer Prize–winning writer comes an exuberant memoir of personal loss and longing, and finding connection on the remote Azorean islands of the Atlantic Ocean. Reporter Diana Marcum is in crisis. A long-buried personal sadness is enfolding her—and her career is stalled—when she stumbles upon an unusual group of immigrants living in rural California. She follows them on their annual return to the remote Azorean islands in the Atlant...

Details The Tenth Island

TitleThe Tenth Island
Release DateAug 1st, 2018
PublisherLittle A
GenreNonfiction, Autobiography, Memoir, Travel

Reviews The Tenth Island

  • Ieva
    Rather odd None of the other Kindle first books for July appealed, so I defaulted to what I thought would be a charming travelogue about the Azores. This book did not turn out be what I had expected. I think I learned more about California than the Azores. I was reminded of how different the USA is to the UK and that we are divided by a common language. The narrative was rather introspective and very autobiographical and I had trouble being into ...
  • Goth Gone Grey
    I enjoy biographies and learning about other places - traveling without ever leaving my couch. This semi-fiction, semi-autobiographical book seemed a great choice for this month's First Reads selection.The book is filled with her experiences, but more with her longing for more. More peace, more romance, more beauty, more.. Saudade. The indescribable longing for something that you're not sure of, whether it be happy or sad, that's just out of reac...
  • Calzean
    The author is a journalist, she is in a slump with nothing going right - no permanent job, no love life and no fulfilment. Through her work she meets some of the many emigrants from the Azores who make an annual pilgrimage back to their homes. She decides to visit this set of islands firstly for a couple of weeks, then a few months and years later for a year.Not surprising she finds happiness in the simple, community-based life style. She writes ...
  • Mandy
    This was neither a travelogue, nor a history book, nor a "lost my shit and found love in a foreign land" book. And I'm good with that.I was initially concerned that I was reading another version of Eat Pray Love (based on the notes on Amazon) but found that the author was less a lost soul and more of a searching one. The Azores sound so beautiful and welcoming, and the format of each chapter almost as a short story was very effective. The Murphy ...
  • Lauren
    I wanted to like this book so much more than I did. The book overall is in chronological order (I think), but wow do the stories bounce around within certain time periods. It is very inconsistent and annoying with peppering of history about the islands/people/California to the point you just wonder, how is this relevant to what is going on? And I'm someone who appreciates historical context, but I got to the point, especially towards the end of t...
  • Sue
    A Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist from California, Marcum let go of everything to go alone to the Azores Islands off the coast of Portugal to explore the California-Azores connection. Although not Azorean herself, she felt a special connection on her first visit and took a year-long leave of absence from her job at the Los Angeles Times to spend more time in the Azores, mostly on the island of Terceira. She lived in houses rented or loaned to h...
  • Karen M
    In the Top Five of My Favorite Books Ever!I am a voracious reader and generally choose detective/sleuth, action-packed adventure stories but, agreeing with other reviewers of this book, it was the only one of the July free reads that remotely appealed to me, perhaps because of my love of travel and exploration of new places.I found this book relaxing and thought-provoking. Ms Markum has an extraordinary way of not only describing the sights and s...
  • Wendy Orford
    Sorry but I did not enjoy this book. I continued reading it because I thought something interesting may happen to Diana on her Azores adventure but it didn't. I found the book rather rambling and difficult to keep up with the different people mentioned. Having said all of that and as a result of reading this book I am planning to visit the Azores next year for a holiday so it cant have been all bad.
  • Francesca
    I really wanted to like this one - it started out strong and the culture and history of the Azores was very interesting. I just could not get on board with Marcum's writing style - the jumping back and forth in narrative was really confusing and I found myself skimming the pages and then just didn't finish it. The Azores are a very compelling topic but I think a more linear writing style may have worked better?
  • Shayna
    I rarely give 5-star reviews, but this beautiful—and beautifully written—memoir most definitely deserves one. Kudos to journalist Diana Marcum for combining the depth and breadth of excellent reporting with the singsongy lyricism of a veteran novelist. I enjoyed every word and have added the Azores to my travel bucket list.
  • Lisa
    SaudadeAs a collector of words, saudade, loosely and inadequately translated to heartfelt longing, spoke to my soul, as did this entire novel. A newspaper reporter explores the lives and stories of Portuguese emigrants and immigrants between the Azores islands and Central Valley, California. Told with a mixture of wistful saudade, humor and descriptive personal experiences, Marcum allows you to travel vicariously to these beautiful islands. I've ...
  • Cat Hall
    This is a beautiful, moving love story between a woman and a string of islands. It speaks to the part of my heart that longs to just go. It reminds me that I am my only obstacle. This book is a must read for those with this internal calling. Enjoy the journey!
  • Tonya
    I once lived in the Acores.When I say the cover of this book I knew where the picture was taken. I lived there. I was a Military wife at Lakes Field. I too fell in love with this mystical place. The people are amazing. I spent 2 years there (December 1992-Feb-1995). An adventure I will hold in my heart forever. Your book brought back so many memories, and yes once you have been chased by a bull in the streets,you never forget it. I lived in Bel J...
  • Dlmrose
  • Brian Stankich
    Humor, History and HeartI liked Diana's humor, historical research and her example of being able to connect with all kinds of people. Her writing style is playful and she obviously has a big heart.
  • Allison
    Loved it! Very engrossing, laugh-out-loud in places.
  • Christina
    Outstanding workThis book is rich and delicious. It makes me want to visit the Azores like the brilliant author. I love how she writes with compassion for those around her and an excellent eye for detail.
  • Jm
    This was a fast read. There is no plot, rather a voyage of self discovery, with vignettes from two geographically different, yet connected places and people. The experiences are from real life and are gentle, filled with humour, and are relatable. I found this to be an excelelnt summer read. As someone who has driven up and down the Central Valley, faced the drought, fire, and water crises in California, and also traveled across the Atlantic in s...
  • John Tingley
    Felt like I was there!Loved the stories and all the facts, humor and warmth embedded in them. Makes me want to travel to the Azores!
  • Kat
    I'm the grandchild of Portuguese immigrants from the Azores, so this was a charming read for me. She captured saudade well. I appreciated that this was partially a travel memoir, but didn't feel like just another self-exploration tale in the string of post Eat, Pray, Love novels. The author's personal experiences and specific appreciation for Portuguese culture enhanced her ability to tell stories of the Azores alongside her own.
  • Teri Valdez
    Beautiful Placei really enjoyed this story and learning so much about a place i never knew existed. The authors words helped me understand how she feels about this place and makes me want to visit.
  • Jean Gordon
    I didn't expect to enjoy this as much as I did. I think it was the characters that drew me in as well as the interesting descriptions of another ethnicity's traditions and transitions.
  • Paula Fletcher
    Couldn't get into this bookI kept waiting for this book to draw me in, but it didn't. I try very hard to give all books a chance, and I realize the effort authors put into their writing, but I simply couldn't make it to a point where I found it worth finishing.
  • LeeAnn Greer
    Thank you for this book. It brought the Azores to life for me, I want to visit. I had a employee for 27 years ago, from the Azores, and she told wonderful stories. This book added to the lovely warm feelings.
  • Gavin R. Laboski
    Wonderful and fun readIf you have ever fallen in love with a place, this book understands and articulates that feeling. If you have never done so, you may want to after reading this.
  • Beverly B Sloan
    An Island DreamThis story allows you to imagine yourself on an island where people work hard, play hard and truly enjoy family and life. Especially their roots! I felt like I was there and found it a delightful read.
  • Laney Dunn
    This could’ve been a great book, but the structure is absolutely terrible. It’s incredibly difficult to follow her writing. I felt like she was jumping around constantly, and there was no flow to it whatsoever. It’s hard to get into the book or her story. Even more importantly to me, this wasn’t the book I felt like I was billed. The Azores were just a setting. I don’t really feel like I took away anything from this book about the islan...
  • Sheket
    This was a great summer read. I liked Diana's writing style very much. Particularly enjoyed the people development that she did, as it makes the characters very familiar feeling -knowable and likable!
  • Betsy Hensley Smothers
    An easy read. I felt like I too was a friend with each character. I enjoyed the narrative biography of Ms. Marcum. The description of the places visited were vividly described. I'd like to visit the Azores one day.