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The Old Patagonian Express tells of Paul Theroux’s train journey down the length of North and South America. Beginning on Boston’s subway, he depicts a voyage from ice-bound Massachusetts to the arid plateau of Argentina’s most southerly tip, via pretty Central American towns and the ancient Incan city of Macchu Pichu. Shivering and sweating by turns as the temperature and altitude rise and plummet, he describes the people he encountered – thrown in with the tedious, and unavoidable, Mr Thornberry in Limón and reading to the legendary blind writer, Jorge Luis Borges, in Buenos Aires. Witty, sharply observed and beautifully written, this is a richly evocative account of travelling to ‘the end of the line’.
Author and travel writer Paul Theroux does what no one else can: he travels to the isolated, unusual, and fascinating spots of the world, and creates an elegy to them that makes readers feel they are traveling with him. Evocative, breathtaking, intriguing, here is the armchair traveler's guide to the sites of the world he makes us feel we know.
Praise for To the Ends of the Earth
“Reads like a wonderful novel.”—The Pittsburgh Press
“Powerful . . . This compendium unequivocally offers insight into the mind of a foremost American fiction writer who became an accidental tourist.”—The Christian Science Monitor
“Theroux is a wonderful traveling companion. . . . To the Ends of the Earth combines the best of his travel writing. . . . With him the reader shares a conversation with a sultan on a polo ground in Malaysia; hears people ‘mourn with firecrackers, scattering cherrybombs on the tombstone’ in a Chinese cemetery in Singapore; feels overdressed around nudists in Corsica; sees sandbagged houses and bombcraters left in Vietnam on a cold December day in 1973.”—The Virginian-Pilot and The Ledger-Star
“Travel writing at its best . . . As you travel voyeuristically with Theroux, across the vast wastelands of interior China, the convoluted cultures of Latin America or campy seacoast towns of England, you're struck with his slightly jaundiced eye for the overlooked but telling detail, his skeptic's ear for the offhand but important comment.”—The Houston Post
In 1973, Paul Theroux embarked on a four-month journey by train from the United Kingdom through Europe, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. In The Great Railway Bazaar, he records in vivid detail and penetrating insight the many fascinating incidents, adventures, and encounters of his grand, intercontinental tour.
Asia's fabled trains—the Orient Express, the Khyber Pass Local, the Frontier Mail, the Golden Arrow to Kuala Lumpur, the Mandalay Express, the Trans-Siberian Express—are the stars of a journey that takes Theroux on a loop eastbound from London's Victoria Station to Tokyo Central, then back from Japan on the Trans-Siberian. Brimming with Theroux's signature humor and wry observations, this engrossing chronicle is essential reading for both the ardent adventurer and the armchair traveler.
AN INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER • "A gripping adventure story."—New York Times Book Review
The paranoid and brilliant inventor Allie Fox takes his family to live in the Honduran jungle, determined to build a civilization better than the one they've left. Fleeing from an America he sees as mired in materialism and conformity, he hopes to rediscover a purer life. But his utopian experiment takes a dark turn when his obsessions lead the family toward unimaginable danger.
Paul Theroux has spent decades roaming the globe and writing of his experiences with remote people and far-flung places. Now, for the first time, he turns his attention to a corner of America—the Deep South. On a winding road trip through Mississippi, South Carolina, and elsewhere below the Mason-Dixon, Theroux discovers architectural and artistic wonders, incomparable music, mouth-watering cuisine—and also some of the worst schools, medical care, housing, and unemployment rates in the nation.
Most fascinating of all are Theroux’s many encounters with the people who make the South what it is—from preachers and mayors to quarry workers and gun show enthusiasts. With his astute ear and penetrating mind, Theroux once again demonstrates his “remarkable gift for getting strangers to reveal themselves” in this eye-opening excursion into his own country (The New York Times Book Review).
“Paul Theroux’s latest travel memoir had me at hello…Theroux pulls no punches in his quest to understand this overlooked margin of American life.” — Boston Globe
WINNER OF THE EDWARD STANFORD AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION TO TRAVEL WRITING 2020
The master of contemporary travel writing, Paul Theroux, immerses himself in the beautiful and troubled heart of modern Mexico
Nogales is a border town caught between Mexico and the United States of America. A forty-foot steel fence runs through its centre, separating the prosperous US side from the impoverished Mexican side. It is a fascinating site of tension, now more than ever, as the town fills with hopeful border crossers and the deportees who have been caught and brought back. And it is here that Paul Theroux will begin his journey into the culturally rich but troubled heart of modern Mexico.
Moving through the deserts just south of the Arizona border, Theroux finds a place brimming with charm, yet visibly marked by both the US border patrol looming to the north and mounting discord from within. Attending local language and culinary schools, driving through the country and meeting its people, Paul Theroux gets under the skin of Mexico.
From the writer praised for his 'curiosity and affection for humanity in all its forms' (New York Times Book Review), On The Plain of Snakes is an urgent and mesmerising exploration of a region in conflict.
Praise for Paul Theroux:
'As cool as Maugham... as observant, intuitive, wry, inventive and eloquent as Graham Greene' Sunday Times
'Theroux's work remains the standard by which other travel writing must be judged' Observer
'The world's most perceptive travel writer' Daily Mail
'One of the most accomplished and worldly-wise writers of his generation' The Times
"Theroux is at the top of his game with his third collection of essays, a magisterial grouping of intimate remembrances, globe-trotting adventures, and incisive literary critiques."—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
"Theroux's observations are so keen and writerly skills so sharp that he butter-slices narratives with a razor-thin surgeon's scalpel, masterfully serving up both the world's dark underbelly and its gloriously uplifting sustenance of love, longing and wonder-lust." —Forbes
Paul Theroux’s latest collection of essays applies his signature searching curiosity to a life lived as much in reading as on the road. This writerly tour-de-force features a satisfyingly varied selection of topics. Travel essays take us to Ecuador, Zimbabwe, and Hawaii, to name a few. Gems of literary criticism reveal fascinating depth in the work of Henry David Thoreau, Muriel Spark, Joseph Conrad, and Hunter Thompson. And in a series of breathtakingly personal profiles, we take a helicopter ride with Elizabeth Taylor, go diagnosing with Oliver Sacks, eavesdrop on the day-to-day life of a Manhattan dominatrix, and explore New York with Robin Williams.
An extended meditation on the craft of writing binds together this wide-ranging collection, along with Theroux’s constant quest for the authentic in a person or in a place.
Dark Star Safari is Paul Theroux's now classic account of a journey from Cairo to Cape Town.
Travelling across bush and desert, down rivers and across lakes, and through country after country, Theroux visits some of the most beautiful landscapes on earth, and some of the most dangerous. It is a journey of discovery and of rediscovery -- of the unknown and the unexpected, but also of people and places he knew as a young and optimistic teacher forty years before.
Safari in Swahili simply means "journey", and this is the ultimate safari. It is Theroux in his element -- a trip where chance encounter is everything, where departure and arrival times are an irrelevance, and where contentment can be found balancing on the top of a truck in the middle of nowhere.
Praise for Paul Theroux:
'Theroux's work remains the standard by which other travel writing must be judged' Observer
'One needs energy to keep up with the extraordinary, productive restlessness of Paul Theroux ... [He is] the most gifted, most prodigal writer of his generation'Jonathan Raban
'Always a terrific teller of tales and conjurer of exotic locales, he writes lean prose that lopes along at a compelling pace'Sunday Times
Paul Theroux's books include Dark Star Safari, Ghost Train to the Eastern Star, Riding the Iron Rooster, The Great Railway Bazaar, The Elephanta Suite, A Dead Hand, The Tao of Travel and The Lower River. The Mosquito Coast and Dr Slaughter have both been made into successful films. Paul Theroux divides his time between Cape Cod and the Hawaiian islands.
The acclaimed author explores the greatest travel writing by literary adventurers from Freya Stark and James Baldwin to Nabokov and Hemmingway.
Paul Theroux celebrates fifty years of wandering the globe with this meditative journey through the books that shaped him as a reader and traveler. Part philosophical guide, part miscellany, part reminiscence, The Tao of Travel enumerates “The Contents of Some Travelers’ Bags” and exposes “Writers Who Wrote about Places They Never Visited”; tracks extreme journeys in “Travel as an Ordeal” and highlights some of “Travelers’ Favorite Places.”Excerpts from the best of Theroux’s own work are interspersed with selections from travelers both familiar and unexpected, including J.R.R. Tolkien, Samuel Johnson, Eudora Welty, Evelyn Waugh, Isak Dinesen, Charles Dickens, Henry David Thoreau, Pico Iyer, Mark Twain, Anton Chekhov, Bruce Chatwin, John McPhee, Peter Matthiessen, Graham Greene, Paul Bowles, and many more.
From legendary writer Paul Theroux comes an atmospheric novel following a big-wave surfer as he confronts aging, privilege, mortality, and whose lives we choose to remember.
Now in his sixties, big-wave surfer Joe Sharkey has passed his prime and is losing his “stoke.” The younger surfers around the breaks on the north shore of Oahu still idolize the Shark, but his sponsors are looking elsewhere. One night, while driving home from a bar after one too many, Joe accidentally kills a stranger near Waimea, a tragedy that sends his life out of control. As the repercussions of the accident spiral ever wider, Joe's devoted girlfriend, Olive, throws herself into uncovering the dead man’s identity and helping Joe find vitality and refuge in the waves again.
Set in the lush, gritty underside of an island paradise readers rarely see, UNDER THE WAVE AT WAIMEA offers a dramatic, affecting commentary on privilege, mortality, and the lives we choose to remember. It is a masterstroke by one of the greatest writers of our time.
The Great Railway Bazaar
In 1973, Paul Theroux embarked on his now-legendary journey from the United Kingdom through Europe, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. Asia's fabled trains—the Orient Express, the Khyber Pass Local, the Frontier Mail, the Golden Arrow to Kuala Lumpur, the Mandalay Express, the Trans-Siberian Express—are the stars of a journey that takes Theroux on a loop eastbound from London's Victoria Station to Tokyo Central, then back from Japan on the Trans-Siberian.
The Old Patagonia Express
Starting with a rush-hour subway ride to South Station in Boston to catch the Lake Shore Limited to Chicago, Paul Theroux takes a grand railway adventure first across the United States and then south through Mexico, Central America, and across the Andes until he winds up on the meandering Old Patagonian Express steam engine.
Ghost Train to the Eastern Star
Thirty years after the epic journey chronicled in The Great Railway Bazaar, Paul Theroux retraces his 25,000-mile journey to witness and experience a landscape drastically transformed by the intervening decades. The Soviet Union has collapsed and China has risen; India booms while Burma smothers under dictatorship; Vietnam flourishes in the aftermath of the havoc America was unleashing on it the last time Theroux passed through.