Cartwheels in a Sari: A Memoir of Growing Up
Ever wonder about life inside a cult, especially from a child's perspective? This was a fascinating account of growing up in the ashram headed by Sri Chinmoy, better known to his followers as "Guru". Tamm was the product of parents who had both sought out an audience with Guru, only to be told that they would marry each other. When Jayanti was born, she was seen as a special child, "the chosen one" in the group and given access to Guru that others rarely had. Members of this group prayed to Guru, gave him money, and counted on him to make all the important decisions in there lives. This book chronicles Tamm's growing up, but also her growing out of the group. The more she was exposed to the "outside world", the more she questioned the practices that she had known all her life. Especially interesting were the accounts of celebrities that passed through the ashram and were considered followers of Guru, including Carl Lewis and Carlos Santana (whose marriage Guru arranged - they are now divorced).
Toni is a career bookseller who has worked in every type of bookstore: small, large, based in a mall, African-American. She is currently toiling away at a major big box store in Atlanta that starts with a "B."