I Have Iraq In My Shoe by Gretchen Berg(4 out of 5)
Gretchen Berg is in her thirties and mired in debt. Debt mostly from her shoe-shopping(shopping in general) addiction. She freaks and begins brainstorming on how to get out of debt. Enter her goofy friend Warren, who is head of a group of teachers living and teaching in Iraq. IRAQ. Take a moment to absorb that. He tells her that anyone who teaches in Iraq will clear close to $70,000, have a villa to herself, and because she’s in Iraq, the US government can’t tax her. Faster than you can say Givenchy, Gretchen’s signed herself up for this gig. You have a hunch things aren’t going to go well when she tries to pack all of her “cute shoes” for Iraq. She ends up stuffing as much of her home comforts in two huge hockey bags, which end up costing her close to $2920 in extra baggage costs(that’s just the first layover to Iraq!). What can I say about Gretchen and her adventure? You will laugh your butt off. You will also be touched and can’t wait to see what happens to her at the end of her two year journey. You will also read and see the evolution of someone whose daily life radically changes, from someone okay with her solitude and online shopping sprees, to someone who becomes less concerned with herself and more concerned with doing good for others and making a contribution to the greater good of those less fortunate. You read a book like Gretchen’s, and it makes you want to make a difference. Or watch More Sex in the City. Either way, a great, quick read.