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Traveling with Pomegranates: A Mother and Daughter Journey to the Sacred Places of Greece, Turkey, and France

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781440754470
  • Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC
  • Publication date: 9/17/2009

Meet the Author

Sue Monk Kidd
Sue Monk Kidd
Already the author of two widely acclaimed nonfiction books, The Dance of the Dissident Daughter and When the Heart Waits, Sue Monk Kidd broke into blockbuster bestselling territory with her first novel, the book-club favorite The Secret Life of Bees.

Biography

Sue Monk Kidd first made her mark on the literary circuit with a pair of highly acclaimed, well-loved memoirs detailing her personal spiritual development. However, it was a work of fiction, The Secret Life of Bees, that truly solidified her place among contemporary writers. Although Kidd is no longer writing memoirs, her fiction is still playing an important role in her on-going journey of spiritual self-discovery.

Despite the fact that Kidd's first published books were nonfiction works, her infatuation with writing grew out of old-fashioned, Southern-yarn spinning. As a little girl in the little town of Sylvester, Georgia, Kidd thrilled to listen to her father tell stories about "mules who went through cafeteria lines and a petulant boy named Chewing Gum Bum," as she says on her web site. Inspired by her dad's tall tales, Kidd began keeping a journal that chronicled her everyday experiences.

Such self-scrutiny surely gave her the tools she needed to pen such keenly insightful memoirs as When the Hearts Waits and The Dance of the Dissident Daughter, both tracking her development as both a Christian and a woman. "I think when you have an impulse to write memoir you are having an opportunity to create meaning of your life," she told Barnes & Noble.com, "to articulate your experience; to understand it in deeper ways... and after a while, it does free you from yourself, of having to write about yourself, which it eventually did for me."

Once Kidd had worked the need to write about herself out of her system, she decided to get back to the kind of storytelling that inspired her to become a writer in the first place. Her debut novel The Secret Life of Bees showed just how powerfully the gift of storytelling charges through Kidd's veins. The novel has sold more than 4.5 million copies, been published in over twenty languages, and spent over two years on The New York Times bestseller list.

Even as Kidd has shifted her focus from autobiography to fiction, she still uses her writing as a means of self-discovery. This is especially evident in her latest novel The Mermaid Chair, which tells the story of a woman named Jessie who lives a rather ordinary life with her husband Hugh until she meets a man about to take his final vows at a Benedictine monastery. Her budding infatuation with Brother Thomas leads Jessie to take stock of her life and resolve an increasingly intense personal tug-of-war between marital fidelity and desire.

Kidd feels that through telling Jessie's story, she is also continuing her own journey of self-discovery, which she began when writing her first books. "I think there is some part of that journey towards one's self that I did experience. I told that particular story in my book The Dance of the Dissident Daughter and it is the story of a woman's very-fierce longing for herself. The character in The Mermaid Chair Jessie has this need to come home to herself in a much deeper way," Kidd said, "to define herself, and I certainly know that longing."

Good To Know

Kidd lives beside a salt marsh near Charleston, South Carolina, with her husband, Sandy, a marriage and individual counselor in private practice, and a black lab named Lily.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 129 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(36)

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(29)

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(27)

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(22)

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(15)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 131 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 14, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A must for mothers and daughters

    Sue Monk Kidd and her daughter, Ann Kidd Taylor, have written a book that details their journey through several of life's "passages". On a trip to Greece to celebrate Sue's 50th birthday and Ann's graduation from college, they each take a look at two of life's milestones and their relationship with each other. Both women are insightful and very forthcoming about the changes that they were going through at the time. If you do nothing but read it as a story of wonderful travels, you will enjoy it, but there is so much more that will resonate in your heart long after you close the book.
    I loved this book and will return to it now and then for further inspiration.

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2009

    SUe Monk Kidd Rocks Again!

    Along with her daughter, she has created a thoughtful yet thoroughly readable masterpiece. Her soul-searching questions, and her daughters', may inspire similar reflections of your own. I also quite enjoyed traveling vicariously to their various global destinations. Highly recommended!

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2010

    Conveys A Good Message But...

    Traveling With Pomegranates tells the story of a mother, daughter relationship in the midst of reconstruction. Sue Monk Kidd, the mother, is trying to figure out how to deal with passing into a new part of her life; becoming an old women. Her daughter, Ann Kidd Taylor, is on the opposite side of life though, and is trying to figure out her place in world and what her purpose is in life. Although their lives and difficulties seem to be opposite, they both share a common road block; the wall that they have built up between them. Their relationship has always been one of love but never one with a deep connection. In order to celebrate Sue's 50th birthday and Ann's graduation from college the two decide to travel to Europe, specifically Greece. The celebratory trip soon turns into one of rebuilding; the relationship between the two women begins to regrow giving both of them the much needed support during their trials. My favorite part of the book was the theme; that no matter what life throws at you, you can always learn and grow from it, becoming a stronger person. Although this book has a great message it really is not written as well as it could have been. Kidd and Taylor did not write their story in way that really captured the reader's attention making it hard to stay focused and make it through the book. I feel that if they could have not drawn out so many parts of the book that it could have been much better, but since they did, I would have to say that I do not recommend this book to anyone unless you have a lot of time on your hands and have a lot of patiences. There are most likely much better books out there in the world in which you can get the same fantastic message and also stay entertained.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 7, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A mother and daughter journey

    Sue Monk Kidd ends this memoir with an apt quote from Anais Nin, "We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection." Traveling with Pomegranates is a personal journey for both Sue Monk Kidd and her daughter Ann Kidd Taylor. As they journey in Greece and France, each of these women is finding herself while simultaneously re-forging the mother and daughter relationship. Sue struggles to find creative energy in herself as she faces 50. Ann, depressed and withdrawn after being rejected from graduate school, searches for a direction in life.

    The most interesting aspects of this memoir relate to Sue Monk Kidd's novel The Secret Life of Bees. During her travels, Sue Monk Kidd develops a personal religion melded from a cult of Mary, classical mythology, and ancient goddesses which forms the basis of the unique Mary/goddess worship that takes place in the novel. The author also describes her struggles to shape the work and her intriguing use of a montage of seemingly random pictures as an "outline" for the novel.

    Ann Kidd Taylor's writing pales in comparison to her mother's complex examination of the interrelationships of myth and life.
    For more reviews, see my website: www.MarshaWaldman.com

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 16, 2010

    I so enjoyed this book!

    I was first attracted to this book when I read was written by the author of The Secret Life of Bees. Different, a memoir, but just as great. It is a autobiographical story of a mother and daughter relationship, with a theme of life passages, travel, women's spiritual life and mythology. How can all those blend? I don't know but they do!!! I really can't recommend this book more. And I have to all my friends. The audio is read by the actual women in their wonderful light southern accent. So pleasant to listen too over and over.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 11, 2011

    Beautifully written!

    This is a book about SO much - being a mother, a daughter ..... or even more simply about being a woman in different stages in life! A memior beautifully written from the heart of two women's experiences. I enjoyed it so much that I recommended it to my book club - it was loved by them all! Thank you Sue and Ann for sharing your inspirational stories!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 16, 2010

    Get this book, share this book

    I was first attracted to this book when I read was written by the author of The Secret Life of Bees. Different, a memoir, but just as great. It is a autobiographical story of a mother and daughter relationship, with a theme of life passages, travel, women's spiritual life and mythology. How can all those blend? I don't know but they do!!! I really can't recommend this book more. And I have to all my friends. Highly recommend this for book clubs. I posted under the audio selection too. The voices on the audio are beautiful. Recommend the audio too.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 2, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Couldn't put it down

    This was a great book. If you liked "Secret Life of Bees," you'll find this book to be great. It's great for mothers and daughters, and those who like to travel. I went to many of the places discussed in the book so it was especially enlightening. A very easy read.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2009

    Traveling with Pomegranates by SueMonk Kidd & Ann Kidd Taylor

    This was an interesting story, following the journey of mother & daughter. The format was interesting in that it was like reading each of their journals or diaries regarding their own personal journey, and the changes being found at each level/age. In some parts I found it interesting. In part, I found it boring when compared to her first book (Secret life of Bees). A bit of a slow read for me persoanlly, but thought provoking in some parts.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 31, 2011

    Highly recommended

    If you are in your 50's and you have a daughter in her 20's or even early thirties, this book is for you!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 29, 2010

    what a boring story

    this book was a complete bore.. after reading about their journey, i thought to myself how this get published. her first novel secret lives of bees was wonderful but she really fell short with this novel. save your money on this one and maybe you can save enough money to visit these countries and experience the beauty they could not describe because they were a depressing mother and daughter team.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2010

    Disappointing

    This book should have been simply two individual journals written by Sue and Ann to share with their grandchildren. A real stretch to think any reader would enjoy such self obsorption of both a mother and daughter. The apple, or in this case pomegrante, does not fall far from the tree.... Or was it a shrub?

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 19, 2010

    BORING

    I have read every recommended book from B&N and every one have been excellent. This book was not worth the RECOMMENDATION

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 14, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Traveling with Pomegranates

    I read and enjoyed both the Mermaid Chair and The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd, prior to reading Traveling with Pomegranates. I was captivated by both of these novels and therefore, really enjoyed the insight into the author's journey toward writing her first novel. I also appreciated the insight into the relationship between mother and daughter. I believe mother-daughter relationships are very complex and Sue Monk Kidd and her daughter Ann Kidd Taylor really explored this relationship with both honesty and sensitivity. As a reader, I was encouraged to explore my own relationships. This book was very inspirational and interesting and I have recommended it to my fellow readers.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 30, 2014

    Silva

    She sat on her bunk.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2014

    Worthy subject, but it just missed

    I respect Sue Monk Kidd, and I enjoy her writing. I respected the chronicle of her journey as a woman, and that of her daughter also. All of the metaphors, and the Greek mythology got to be a little much, I felt it occluded the real feelings and motives.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2013

    This is about the saddest thing I have read in awhile. Kidd goe

    This is about the saddest thing I have read in awhile.
    Kidd goes from what she considers " patriarchal" church to a pursuit of something that will never leave her full or satisfied.
    Instead of seeking the things of God while travelling the world, she pursues what are idols and goddesses. This book does explain how she ever came up with the Secret Life of Bees but somehow takes away from it when you realize that she actually puts stock in the fiction she created. What a sad tale.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2012

    Highly Recommended

    As always Sue Monk Kidd is easy to read and gives much fodder to chew on. It is a guide for mother/daughter dialogue to better understanding. The Apple didn't fall from the tree. Ann is traveling the road to discovery and sharing her experience in a clear understanable way. An excellent guide for young and old.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2012

    Boou

    !?"'@/:;,&()-+!+?-")'(@&/,:;

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2012

    bhbgbt

    B i t c bh

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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