Expat Magazine

Hungry for Change

By Sofiaessen
Have you ever wanted to step back in time? Is your personal daily rat race making you frantic and yearn for something new? If the answer to either of these questions is a "Yes", I suggest you give “Change of Pace” a try!
“Change of Pace”, Sofia Essen's first novel, brilliantly captures the very essence of life on the Greek Isles. I was once lucky enough to actually travel and explore the Greek Isles myself. Once I stepped off the ferry, I stepped back in time. Once I took my first breath, filling my lungs with clean island air, and felt the ancient soil under my feet, I was transformed. Once the warmth of Greek sunlight hit my face, my own rat race was suddenly miles away. Being surrounded by the sights and sounds of antediluvian land enveloping me gave way to a realization of a new inner peace. 

Sofia is an amazing writer. Her words will weave magic in your mind, vividly and accurately painting the picture of this special ancient place.Please take a moment from your busy day and look at Greek island life through her eyes. The island of Crete is itself a character in the book, welcoming you in.  Experience the people, food, music and culture, without having to deal with airport security. I think it’s best to let Sofia and the characters she crafted do the talking. I give you now a small taste of some of my favorite aspects of “Change of Pace” to whet your appetite. “Skip Athens and head strait to Crete." – Alex ‘The delivery man stuck a note on one of the crates saying he would be back to settle the bill later today...or maybe tomorrow. That’s the way things are done here in Crete. No hurry, no worry. So what if you owe someone several thousand Euros worth of spirits? If you pay them tomorrow or next week even, that’s soon enough.’ – Anna’s private musings. “It’s taking them a while to catch up with me. Nothing changes in Crete, but when it does, it takes a long time for people to accept it. The New Square in Kastelli is over a hundred years old, but to many people it’s still new.” – Yannis the Raki King ‘In Crete, most young men and women tend to stay at home with their parents even after they’re married. They simply bring their wife or husband home with them. And when they have children, the grandparents take care of them while the parents work. I think it’s a nice setup – large families living happily under one roof, looking out for each other.’ – Anna’s observations on Greek family life. ‘Jane takes us to a small, traditional Greek tavern that is almost hidden at the end of one of Old Town’s tightest alleys. Jane is friends with the proprietress, a rotund, gray-haired woman in her seventies, which means we don’t get to see the menu. We’re served the best the kitchen has to offer today, and that turns out to be a feast. First, a plate of mixed grilled vegetables and dolmades (vine leaves stuffed with rice and minced meat) arrives followed shortly by an enormous platter of assorted grilled seafood. For dessert we’re offered Greek yogurt drizzled with honey and sprinkled with crushed almonds.’ – Anna experiencing authentic Cretan fare in a genuine setting. ‘I turned my head and saw a bearded middle-aged man in blue overalls coming toward me. His skin was dark and deeply lined, which made me think he had spent the majority of his life working outdoors. He fished a knife out of one of his many pockets and deftly cut down an entire bunch of grapes. 
   “Do you know what the best thing about living in Drapanias is?” he asked as he placed the grapes on the tabletop in front of me.
   I shook my head silently.
   “Free food,” he said and then turned on his heel and left the leafy cave.’ –  Anna’s first meeting with Yannis the Raki King  
Hungry for more? Treat yourself to a full meal, order Sofia Essen's “Change of Pace” here at Amazon or Barnes & Noble. You’ll be glad you did! 

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