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Dancing Alone in Mexico: From the Border to Baja and Beyond Paperback – July 1, 2000
2016 Book Awards
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Just as Mexico is colored with celebration, so are Butler's travels. He tastes the marrow of the land, not merely as a tourist, but as a participant in local traditions. He seizes an opportunity to visit the last great American Matador, Diego O'Bolger, capturing the machismo spirit of the matador's dressing room. He claims to find the world's most delectable cup of coffee in the venerable city of Veracruz. He describes area legends, such as an ageless pearl diver forever searching the waters off La Paz for the best pearl its oyster beds can produce, and the portentous mummies stolen from unpaid graves and grotesquely displayed in a museum of Guanajuato. The reader is also treated to an in-depth exploration of the tangled relationship between Frida Khalo and Diego Rivera, two of Mexico's most famed artists.
Butler gives of himself in these pages. His sentiments are fiercely expressed--often as veracious loneliness or estrangement: "The trip seemed incomplete somehow; I was sorry it was over. I imagined that, meanwhile out at sea, deep below the water's surface, a bearded figure with ghostly flowing hair paused briefly and then continued on, content in the knowledge, for the moment at least, that someone, somehow, shared his ceaseless wandering." Dancing Alone in Mexico is as alluring and sweet as cajeta, the caramelized Mexican candy, and will draw any reader into reveries of this magical land. --Jacque Holthusen
From Library Journal
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top Customer Reviews
The best part of the book was the last section where the articles were much longer and gave you some real insight into Mexican culture and it's effect on the author.A little dissappointing overall.
Travel is something of a perpetual elixir for my wife, Sally, and me. The surprises we encounter are much more important than any specific trip, since as septuagenarians, we have pretty much seen it all. Last year a well known travel magazine wrote an article about "50 of the top places in the world you must see". It turned out we had been to 42.
Taking yet another unique trip in early January of this year, up and down the Copper Canyon (Barranca de Cobre) on a fancy train called the Sierra Madre Express proved no exception. One goes to Tucson, boards a bus for Nogales, crosses the Border into Mexico and takes this spectacular train trip up into a canyon deeper than our Grand Canyon on a train with liveried men ready to meet your every need for food and drink. The best part is that you only sleep on the train one night going and one night returning. The other nights are spent in quaint posadas, enjoying excellent food and real Mexican countryside ambiance, not the noxious fumes of Mexico City. But I digress.
We joined some 30 well traveled, mostly older folks, all calm and congenial, each with his or her own fascinating life experiences, . One fellow traveler proved particularly interesting. Ron Butler, a Tucson based veteran travel writer, has successfully sold stuff over a long career to Fodor, Ladies Home Journal, Travel and Leisure, etc. This avuncular, white haired sometime raconteur brought along his attractive thirtyish daughter, Alexandra, and a copy of his recent book, his life story, which those suffering from marital malaise will especially relish.Read more ›
"[A] love song to a country, to a people, to a way of life that is at once alien and yet irresistibly alluring." -Chicago Tribune
"Dancing Alone in Mexico captures the flavor of the country, its true essence, in a series of personal memoirs that provide illuminating insights for anyone venturing south of the border, or for the armchair traveler seeking literary adventure." -The Mature Traveler
"Whether Butler is describing an afternoon of shopping in Nogales, his search for the perfect cup of Mexican coffee, or the allure of the night ferry to La Paz, he writes with a passion that is contagious. This is an excellent book, with an intimacy more often found in love letters than travel books." -Arizona Daily Star
"If you plan to travel to Mexico, Dancing Alone in Mexico by Ron Butler is must reading. If you would like to travel to Mexico but can't get there, Dancing Alone in Mexico is well worth the price to live vicariously through the eyes and ears of a many who loves, enjoys, understands and knows the country better than any norte Americano I know." -Montgomery Alabama Advertiser
"Indispensable for the true traveler." - Jim Harrison, author of The Road Home
"Fun to read, informative, and eye-moistening for those of us who have loved Mexico for longer than we care to tell. A big Olé!" - Barnaby Conrad, author of Matador
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One can notice a creeping relativism: a) over time (history); b) when considering measurable and comparative standards (values, codes, degrees); and c) when one has the ability to... Read morePublished on October 29, 2012 by Theoretix
Well, I have looked for the book and unfortunately haven't found it yet on bookstores (a bit rare I guess) but I won't doubt this being a rare gem. Read morePublished on September 4, 2003
With th listing of my book DANCING ALONE IN MEXICO, you have chosen to run an "anonymous" review by a reader who seems to have turned criticizing my book into a cottage industry. Read morePublished on August 20, 2003