Earth to Kat Vespucci
"I administer an overseas study program in China, and Ingrid Anders' book is the best account I've read of the psychology and emotional adjustment of Americans studying abroad ... [t]he spectrum from whimsy and humor -- the zany surrealism of cultural immersion of the 'Lost in Translation' type -- to the shock of seeing how politics, global conflict and terrorism impact the lives of ordinary people ... [t]he book is fun, funny, enlightening, entertaining, thought-provoking, and well-written. And it never takes itself too seriously. I look forward to the sequel, which I hear is set in Taiwan!!" Click here to read the full review in its original context.
David Moser, Sinologist
"Ingrid Anders’ style is crisp and dry, her pacing perfect, and her characterization colorful and deft. Kat’s snarky wit will keep readers chuckling and characters like Fritz and Uncle Otto round out a cast of characters worthy of their own reality show (if only they weren’t fictional). The brilliant thing about this book is that in between the tales of internship nightmares and roommate drama lie lessons on the importance of staying true to one’s self and the dangers of unchecked nationalism. As much of a coming of age story as it is a call to get out and see the world beyond our own front door, Earth to Kat Vespucci is a story that will appeal to anyone who has ever wanted to break free from the ordinary." Click here to read the full review in its original context and the interview that follows.
Danielle K., Mercurial Musings
"Anders skillfully and humorously navigates a sheltered young woman's eye-opening experience abroad. Fortunately, Europe is a tame introduction to the "rest" of the world, and Kat is a curious and intelligent explorer. Anyone who took their first trip abroad as an adult will likely identify with many of her bumblings, and with this character, Anders shows herself to be a promising new novelist." Click here to read the full review in its original context.
Catherine Bodry, Gadling.com
"'Earth to Kat Vespucci', the first novel from young author Ingrid Anders, is an entertaining and wistful look at one young womans coming of age in a post-cold war world where a generation struggles to find meaning on its own terms. Set appropriately enough against the backdrop of modern Berlin, Anders fashions a story that smartly balances culture clash (a shower which comically spurts water in six second intervals, and a Cabaret singing sex-changing transvestite both figure prominently) with sharp narrative creating a Europe that hasn't been this much fun for Americans since John Irving's 'The Hotel New Hampshire'. Spasiba Kat!"
"A stand-out first novel. For me, about full participation in the act of living; abundant with sharp satisfying humour, keen observation, and -- in E.E. Cummings' famous phrase -- 'that precision which creates movement.'"
"Ingrid Anders is an author with a great future and in her first book "Earth to Kat Vespucci," she has created a winner that is not only entertaining and funny but also highly educational for Americans who have not ventured outside of the United States. Not only is she an excellent story-teller but her humor is contagious; both my husband and I chuckled loudly throughout reading the book in record time. Having been a "tumbleweed" myself in my younger years and being of German birth, I can identify totally with her experiences. The joys of being young, unencumbered and adventurous with boundless energy brought me back to a period in my life in the 1960s, thus I am exceedingly happy to learn this part of youth is still being enjoyed. The humble accommodation in the Plattenbau of former East Germany, the student hang-outs, the shower episodes and the flasher - they all resonate and she finds the perfect words to describe Kat's feelings and reactions to any and all of the adventures she encounters. BRAVO - I can't wait for Kat Vespucci's next adventures. Somehow I feel there is a lot more coming from this writer in the future. Her credentials are most impressive and I shall follow her path with great anticipation in this venue expressing one of her many talents - GO FOR IT KAT.................."
The latest poem [the Bustle Below] by Ingrid Anders is wonderful. Living in an area where i can see from my windows bottle-nosed dolphins feed nightly I know the thrill, also of swimming with them. Ingrid captured the mood beautifully!
"Anybody who has studied abroad or is thinking about studying abroad must read this book. With a style and wit that kept me both laughing and thinking, the author forces the reader to consider the world through different perspectives as Kat becomes increasingly aware of both the size of the world and her place in it. Twisted into Kat's growing awareness of the world outside of New Jersey, is an insightful depiction of the impacts of love, rejection and hope on all who are working to weave their way through the complicated life choices facing all college students. Finally, for all who are interested in travel, this book will surely fuel your fire to explore Germany and revitalize that itch to get out the door and see a new country. Great book by a new author, finishing it made me want to book a flight immediately and left me looking forward to Kat's next adventure."
"This book is a must-read for anyone who has studied or lived abroad, or even just visited Berlin, who will inevitably recognize Kat's mixed feelings as she goes through the ups and downs of adjusting to a new culture. That said, any reader will enjoy Anders' wry sense of humor. You will inevitably find yourself chuckling as she gently skewers both European and American foibles."
"From the very first pages, this coming-of-age tale is engaging and adventuresome. The character goes through a variety of experiences which open her eyes to the world beyond her own, ultimately yielding an understanding of self and the cultures that shape us throughout the world. Sprinkled with wit and comic situations, this is a fun and intelligent read for anyone interested in international affairs and other cultures."
Jonathan E. Wolfington
"The writer displays a wicked sense of humour. I could not help myself from laughing out loud, while reading. Her style of writing is very fluid which makes reading this book so very enjoyable. She does have a unique way of expressing herself. While poking fun at a European government, bureaucrats in general, and students on the loose she points out flaws in how this world works. Having visited Berlin myself, I have seen some of the places mentioned. I would highly recommend this book to adult readers and international travelers with a sense of humour."
"Well, the book was certainly worth the anticipation for me. Laugh out loud? Absolutely. The traumatic "going away cake" was certainly the funniest for me, as I found myself laughing even after my second go at it. And poor Kat...one can't help but sympathize with such a sweet, perhaps naive young lady. I am already looking forward to the second novel from this worldly, yet impressively grounded author from New Jersey. Yes New Jersey. Thanks for all the insights and laughs Ms. Anders!"
"Ms Anders has a knack for humorous expression, with an understanding of the mind set of the twenty-plus, post college age group. Her book had me cackling more than once. There is Word War Two history, German character idiosyncracies, American student naivette, and youth's take on the political structure of the western world. All in all, this is an entertaining and informative read."
"Earth to Kat Vespucci is the best book ever."
"Reading your short story Ashes Ashes gave me the chills. You put together a very moving story about events you were too young to have experienced yourself. It shows your ability to transform simple accounts into a vivid and moving story. Thank you."
Regine I. Lombardo
"Ashes Ashes is a powerfully written short story about an innocent woman's life being slowly devoured by a fascist state. Human history at times, seems like little more than a roll call of atrocities, leading us to turn away from any attempt at greater understanding of our nature. A story like this makes us ask the harder questions about fear, hatred, and faith, even if the answers are not necessarily what we wish to hear. The past is prologue; thanks for having the courage to create something beautiful out of the 'ashes' of the twentieth century's worst hours. This is where hope is born!"
"I really enjoyed Berlin, Ingrid - the enigmatic stranger, the history of the city, the throb of the club. Thank you :)"
"After reading Earth to Kat Vespucci, I was highly impressed and enjoyed the novel of this young author enormously. A breath of fresh air amongst books being published today which serve no purpose other than exposing the reader to sexual or violent plots. Lately I noticed she has added to her poetry/prose and again, I am highly impressed by a new, blunt, and poignant voice that all of us need to hear. "Billy with the Bad Eyes" is simply wonderful and reminds me of Wolfgang Borchert's poem "JUST SAY NO," written after WWII. She brings into focus the pointlessness of war, prejudice against gay people, racism, and all the other evils in this world we need to address if we don't want to perish as a race. Her sense of humor matches her serious side creating a well-balanced amount of prose and poetry. This young lady is going to go places and her fans are anxiously awaiting the publication of her second novel, Kat Vespucci and the Renegade Province. Bravo, keep-up the good work."
Inge Perreault, www.ingeperreault.eu
"I like Floriana. I think this is your best poem to date."
"Regarding your new poem \"Berlin\", I want to say that it seems as though there is a disconnect between the style of the first page and the style of the last two pages. I much prefer the former.
And while I'm on the subject, don't be afraid of white space.
I was schooled in the New Formalism style, i.e. if there is no need for a word, eliminate it altogether. Like most writers who are more comfortable in the medium of prose, you have a tendency to overwrite at times. Sometimes the most powerful images are those that you as the poet feel no need to completely flesh out, lest anyone miss the point altogether.
The idea of showing versus telling is something that every poet should keep in mind, and if you should choose to revise this work, I recommend you apply it liberally.
\"In this verse, am I TELLING the audience what I want them to see, or am I SHOWING them an image or a concept and letting them form their own conclusions from it?\"
If it were me, I would eliminate about half the text, then condense what you have left to its barest essentials. Prune, prune, prune.
You have the raw talent necessary, but in my humble opinion, resist the temptation to provide expository detail. What would be considered vague in prose is absolutely essential to poetry.
I hope this helped!"
"Thomas Hardy was a novelist who also wrote poetry and would receive letters recommending how he might write better poetry in some other style; to which he'd reply his disinclination to accept the coaching of another poet. A writer of lyric poetry thinks their approach so much more effective than that employed by narrative poets; a reader of haiku grows impatient with the writer of sonnets; some poets speak plainly and others are highly obscure; Patchen and Ginsberg rave like drunks; Bukowski assuredly a drunk; better (Hardy wrote) that they would argue about who is the greatest prizefighter instead. A poet can and should strive only with the voice natural to themselves. If that fails, as it evolves on the very long road of a body of work, so be it. Oh, one would well read G.M. Hopkins, say, to experience and learn how razor-sharp and evocative poetic language can truly be, or Cummings for his terse wry eye, or Dryden, or Milton, or a hundred others for their fine qualities -- but these things go in silence."