Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Molly Taught Me Some Wonderful Things.

What Scotland Taught MeWhat Scotland Taught Me by Molly Ringle
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A number of years ago, I traveled through South East Asia and at the time, it seemed that everyone of my age was reading "The Beach". It was required reading, particularly among the back packers and the bohemians on the Islands of Koh Samui and Phuket. I read that book like everyone else and it occupies a special place in my library as much for the memories of my traveling as the book itself - which I stress I enjoyed immensely.

In that same vein, I firmly believe that Molly Ringle's "What Scotland Taught Me" should be added to that list of 'the book' that every care free young traveler, about to embark on a journey of discovery in the UK, should have on their device or in their travel bag.

From the Author's description we find fresh out of high school, student Eva Sonneborn heading to Scotland with her best friends: scholarly, sarcastic Laurence; gorgeous, ghost-seeing Amber; and responsible, sweet Shannon. They plan to spend the next six months in Edinburgh, enjoying an adventure-filled work-abroad journey before parting ways for college.

But when Eva meets Gil, a local bartender, she figures a little innocent flirting won't hurt her relationship with Tony, her ever-faithful boyfriend back home. But just when things turn less innocent with Gil, the trip starts throwing curveballs at not only her but her friends too. By the end of the trip, they've all fallen in love, sometimes with the wrong people - and with consequences that may tear their friendship apart forever...

What Scotland Taught Me typifies the modern 20 something life experience writ large and features the classic must have locale in Edinburgh. The story immediately transports the reader, putting one into the very environment of Edinburgh and you can instantly imagine the sounds and the smells and the romance of the city as though you were actually there. Ringle's writing style has a musicality about it and she sets up scenes and places with a deft hand that has a touch of artistry about it. The core characters too, are all well fleshed out. They are attractive, appealing and their individual journeys unfold in a satisfying way. There is nothing contrived in this story - the interactions are real, scenes visually satisfying the conversations are imbued with Molly's intelligent voice. You experience each of the characters to the point where they become your friends.

What Scotland Taught Me is a coming of age story that is fresh, romantic and it has a soul. This should be at the top of your list for your Kindle device.


  1. Dean! Thank you so much! I just noticed this. You're the best! And rest assured that I quite liked the Australians I met in Edinburgh, despite my jokes on the subject in the novel. :)

  2. Oh don't you worry. I chuckled quite a bit when the Australians featured for sure. We can be akin to being like four seasons in one day. It was a pleasure to read.