Marion’s Favorites: Santa Fe, New Mexico

I’m writing about one of my favorite places – Santa Fe, New Mexico. Known for its strong creative community, this beautiful, unique city drew me to it in 1994, when I was not quite 23 years old. I was living in Atlanta, Georgia, at the time. Desperate for a new experience, I sold all my possessions and moved across the country with only a few hundred dollars in my pocket.

My new home in downtown Santa Fe was located close to the Cross of the Martyrs (see below), a well-known landmark built on a hill. The walk up to the monument is lined with plaques telling the history of the city, and when you reach the top you are rewarded with beautiful views of the Sangre de Cristo mountains. I made frequent visits here during my five years living in Santa Fe, as well as indulging my love of art – the galleries on Canyon Road are filled with fascinating Native American and Hispanic artworks native to the city.

Above all, I credit Santa Fe with kickstarting my writing career. I got my first introduction to the world of books and publishing through my jobs at a couple of mom and pop bookstores in the city. This turned into a lifelong fascination, and without my experience in Santa Fe, I don’t believe I could ever have created the world of Kammbia.

Santa Fe is a city I always recommend to travelers – have you ever visited? Let me know in the comments.

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 36: Binti Home by Nnedi Okorafor

Can you ever go home again? Binti Home by Nnedi Okorafor attempts to answer that question. Binti returns home after a year away on a spaceship at Oozma University. She brings her friend, Okwu, for support. However, the homecoming does not go as expected and the family treats Binti like a pariah. She discovers a… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 35: Animals at the End of the World by Gloria Susana Esquivel

I have a soft spot for coming-of-age stories. I don’t have a good explanation for why those stories appeal to me as a reader. But, they do. When I found out about this first novel from Colombian author Gloria Susana Esquivel, I knew I had to read it. Animals at the End of the World… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 34: Black Women in Science by Kimberly Brown Pellum

Daddy, I’m ready to read another book with you at bedtime. I loved hearing that sentence from my 10-year-old daughter, Norah. We have read many books together over her young life. This time she wanted about women in science. I did a Google search a few weeks ago and came across Black Women in Science… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 33: Jay-Z (Made In America) by Michael Eric Dyson

I love getting books as Christmas gifts especially from my 10-year-old daughter. This year’s Christmas gift is Jay-Z (Made In America) by Michael Eric Dyson. I will confess upfront that Jay-Z is not my favorite rapper and I have not listened to a lot of his music. My favorite rappers are Big Daddy Kane and… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 32: A Time To Dance by Padma Venkatraman

One of the joys of reading is discovering a book (or author) you would have never come across in your normal reading experience. I will confess upfront that I’m not that much of a fan of YA novels. Reading about teenagers (or young adults) and their problems or issues does not move me as a… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 31: Ascending by Meg Pechenick

What if you were the only person on a spaceship with an alien race? You were the person groomed to speak an alien language and take part in an intercultural exchange between planets? You would want to do it in the first place? If you did, how you feel about it? Excited? Optimistic? Groundbreaking? Or… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 30: The Chef’s Secret by Crystal King

It is interesting how a certain sub-genre presents itself to you as a reader. I have not been a historical fiction reader throughout my reading life. However, I read several historical fiction novels over the past couple of years. Beginning with the novels of Guy Gavriel Kay like Children of Earth and Sky, A Brightness… Continue Reading