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  1. #1
    Premium Member Aniseteph's Avatar
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    Thumbs up At last - review of Zanbaka's book!

    Bellydance for the Versatile Dancer – Volume I: Foundations, by Zanbaka

    I was lucky enough to win this book in the Pick a Card game here a few months back, and I promised to report back. So here goes.

    First my disclaimer: I’ve been learning Egyptian style for about 5 years now. From what I’ve seen there are teachers out there who would probably disagree with some of the things in this book (ah well, that’s belly dance) and I don’t know much about the tribal/fusion side. On one level I don’t feel qualified to judge a teacher…

    But on another, as a student and belly dance obsessive – I LOVE THIS BOOK! Obviously no one is going to learn to dance just from a book, but as a study guide to complement what you are learning from a live teacher or even DVD, I think Zanbaka has done a fantastic job. There are lots of annotated pictures, user-friendly descriptions of muscle groups, practise sequences with simple to understand notation, and none of those ambiguous names for particular moves that make you go “huh?” All of which made it very easy to tie it in to my own experience; the focus on solid foundations will make it just as relevant to students of a wide range of styles.

    There’s also plenty of all the stuff that teachers should tell you about, like the various dance styles, music, safety, approaches to learning… that for reasons of time, interest of students or (shhhh…) knowledge (ooh, I said it!) can be missing from some belly dance classes. It’s written in an easily readable style, and focuses squarely on the dance rather than finding your inner mystic goddess, fat burning, or empowering yourself (even if these are recognised side effects ).

    So, thoroughly recommended. I would be rushing out to get Volume 2 if it wasn’t for the fact that I know there is plenty in Volume 1 to keep me busy (must DO the practice, rather than sit on sofa reading about it while eating Turkish Delight).

    At one point I thought what this book did need was to be printed on lovely expensive glossy paper with lots of lavish full colour illustrations. But on second thoughts this would probably only encourage the sofa/Turkish delight thing; so better take that back!

    Thank you to Zanbaka for writing this book and for giving OD.net a copy so I could win it , thank you to Salome for the competition.

  2. #2
    Administrator Salome's Avatar
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    Alright, cool. And your welcome and thank you Zanbaka

  3. #3
    Junior Member Zanbaka's Avatar
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    Thanks so much for your feedback, Aniseteph! It is greatly appreciated. Best, ~Zanbaka

  4. #4
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    Thumbs up Zanbaka's books

    I've just received both vols of her book. I really like them especially the notes on how not to injure yourself and the details of anatomy. The details alone are useful in protecting your back...being an old dancer... i've already injured my back ...but this book will keep me dancing a lot longer and injury free. Thanks Zanbaka for your book

  5. #5
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    I bought the first volume. It is well written and illustrated, and I recevied the book promptly, but I am frankly appalled at the price of this paperback book in comparison to others of similar length and content. I probably will not buy subsequent volumes, but will suggest them as purchases for the local library instead.

  6. #6
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    Default Zanbaka's book

    Yes Shanazel you are right about the price and I agree that if a library had the subsequent volumes I would get them from there. ... but being an old snot... they were requested as a birthday gift from a group of people.

  7. #7
    Junior Member Zanbaka's Avatar
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    Thanks for your feedback, C.O.Dancer

    Shanazel, I would have welcomed your direct communication and I'd be more than happy to issue you a refund if you're not happy with your purchase. Being self-published, I unfortunately don't have access to the printing resources of a big publishing company. Thanks for your understanding.
    Best, ~Zanbaka

  8. #8
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    I do understand, Zanbaka, and I don't require a refund, though you are very generous to offer one. As I said, I will recommend this book and your subsequent books to the library for purchase. I don't have access to the library's book budget or I might buy them all myself. Shanazel

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