Summary: If you’re looking for a book about Colombia that involves harrowing escapes from FARC guerrillas or tales of drug smuggling… this is not it. Instead, MISSPELLED PARADISE gives an honest and lighthearted look at the history, culture, and diversity of a country that may be struggling with poverty and a civil conflict, but celebrates its joy with blasting street parties named after the stacks of amplifiers, tiny watery beers, and a never-ending parade of beauty contestants.
As a volunteer middle school English teacher in an impoverished Colombian Caribbean community, Bryanna Plog recounts with dry humor her year traveling Colombia’s cities, deserts, and rainforests (fairly successful ventures), her attempts to hold class on a regular schedule (less successful), and her quest to eat meals that didn’t include rice (a complete and utter failure).
From the high rises of Bogotá, to the small island town of Santa Ana, from the deserts of the Guajira peninsula and the northern-most part of South America to the jungles of the Amazon rainforest far south, learn, be surprised, and laugh out loud as you journey through a reinvented Colombia.
I have wanted to go to Colombia since I was 23 and worked with this ridiculously cool kid named Andres. Andres was from Bogota and he used to tell me how things were different and someday the world would see that. Andres went off to Purdue and I have not seen in him in over a decade… but his passion for his home has always stuck with me.
Here is the funny thing though, up until about two years ago… I always spelled Colombia… Columbia. So when I saw this book I laughed the moment I read the title and knew I needed to read it.
This book has be me laughing at 3 am and I could not put it down. The book touched on some serious subjects like poverty, lack of education and drugs but she did it in such a refreshing way that I felt like I was sitting in front of her having a conversation about her time in Colombia.
The author is a fantastic story teller and I bet after you read this novel you will want to go to Colombia too, or at least be way more curious about this country that you were before you read it.
Such a fantastic read I highly advise you read this one…. asap.