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Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite
An Intense Calm: Maldives Eco Surfing Chronicle by Thirumoolar Devar follows Devar’s adventures through the magical archipelago. Twenty years earlier Devar had an epiphany that inspired his travels. At twenty-nine, he decided to make decisions that would lead him to achieve his dreams. After countries shut down their borders following the pandemic outbreak, 2020 presented an unexpected twist that forced Devar to remain in the Maldives. The book is dotted with breath-taking photographs that explore the island's biodiversity which includes different species of birds and aquatic life. Photos of colorful flowers brighten the pages. Captivating images of surfers riding waves, geographical map guides, photographs depicting locals’ everyday life, and picturesque images that capture the island’s beauty are also included.
An Intense Calm combines compelling facts with lines of poetry and diary entries of days spent in the Maldives. Geographical facts, such as that the Maldives is 130 km from east to west and has an elevation of 1.5 meters which makes it the lowest in the world, provide informative content that helped me learn more about the country. The life lessons that are included offer useful insight and the entries provide a personal look into Devar’s experiences. They inspired me to take a closer look into what nature offers and learn from it. Devar also explores the need for ecological preservation in the book. He explains how to learn and make the most out of travel experiences. He discusses the need for a positive attitude and respecting the locals and their culture. An Intense Calm is an insightful and educative collection of lessons, observations, and experiences.