Sunday, April 17, 2011

Radio Shangri-La, by Lisa Napoli: Review

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Crown (February 8, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307453022
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307453020
From Booklist

A successful journalist working for public radio in Los Angeles, Napoli hit a wall. Burned out and overwhelmed by regret, she wondered how to recharge her life. Enter a friend of a friend with connections to the tiny Himalayan country of Bhutan. In 2006, this Buddhist kingdom, long cocooned against the outside world, launched a new youth radio station, Kuzoo FM (kuzoo zampo means hello). Would Napoli like to volunteer as a consultant? So begins a love affair with a land unlike any other, a bond that lifts Napoli out of her blues and enriches the lives of the young people with whom she works. The stories of the wildly popular station are charming and gracefully revealing as Napoli shares her experiences of Bhutan's magnificent landscape, fiery cuisine, and openhanded daily life in a society that measures its achievements not with a Gross National Product but, rather, with Gross National Happiness. Napoli's engaging, keenly observed, and informative chronicle captures Bhutan midmetamorphosis as it transforms itself into a democracy and as media and the Internet redefine the Bhutanese concept of contentment. --Donna Seaman

My Thoughts: Radio Shangri-La is what I would guess an armchair memoir of Lisa Napoli's visits to Bhutan. From your easy chair you can visit Bhutan and follow the author and her visits to Bhutan. There are some parts of the story that are very interesting, and other parts are just downright boring, and maybe unnecessary.  It was not a page turner for me.  That being said, the experiences and thoughts Napoli shares made the reading of the book worthwhile. 

I have to admit I had to google Bhutan to find out where it was located and read a bit of it's history, since I had never heard of this small country before. After all, I don't think there are very many travel memoirs about Bhutan. It was an enjoyable, and not so quick, a read for me, however, I did not think of it as a waste of my time as I read it, although, it will not have me forcing all my friends to read it, either.

I gave it 3*** because it was an OK read.

This book was received, and given to me from, "Read It Forward."


  1. Thanks for your thoughts on this book.
    I am stuggling with the book I am reading.

  2. Thanks for stopping by today. I just posted an email I got from an old lawyer friend of mine & it's a hoot. Only someone in our age group will understand the humor! I'm so glad you heard what Baby did! I just played it for Dave & the guys in the band (today's practice day), and we were laughing up a storm. Ahhhh It's good to laugh! See ya tomorrow my friend! Take er' light! Got to go make dinner now. We're having spaghetti! HEY, what do you want from a short dago! LOL