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Lost on Planet China: The Strange and True Story of One Man's Attempt to Understand the World's Most Mystifying Nation or How He Became Comfortable Eating Live Squid Hardcover – July 8, 2008
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The bestselling author of The Sex Lives of Cannibals returns with a sharply observed, hilarious account of his adventures in Chinaâa complex, fascinating country with enough dangers and delicacies to keep him, and readers, endlessly entertained.
Maarten Troost has charmed legions of readers with his laugh-out-loud tales of wandering the remote islands of the South Pacific. When the travel bug hit again, he decided to go big-time, taking on the worldâs most populous and intriguing nation. In Lost on Planet China, Troost escorts readers on a rollicking journey through the new beating heart of the modern world, from the megalopolises of Beijing and Shanghai to the Gobi Desert and the hinterlands of Tibet.
Lost on Planet China finds Troost dodging deadly drivers in Shanghai; eating Yak in Tibet; deciphering restaurant menus (offering local favorites such as Cattle Penis with Garlic); visiting with Chairman Mao (still dead, very orange); and hiking (with 80,000 other people) up Tai Shan, Chinaâs most revered mountain. But in addition to his trademark gonzo adventures, the book also delivers a telling look at a vast and complex country on the brink of transformation that will soon shape the way we all work, live, and think. As Troost shows, while we may be familiar with Yao Ming or dim sum or the cheap, plastic products that line the shelves of every store, the real China remains a worldâindeed, a planet--unto itself.
Maarten Troost brings China to life as youâve never seen it before, and his insightful, rip-roaringly funny narrative proves that once again he is one of the most entertaining and insightful armchair travel companions around.
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However, I have and still do spend a considerable amount of time in China, and my personal impressions are very different. There is a Chinese saying - “looking for bones in an egg”, which means that someone is deliberately looking for things to criticize. The author admits that he went to China with the purpose of writing this book, and if he weren’t describing various sorts of disasters and his adventures while overcoming them, then the book would be boring and not interesting to anyone. He even gives a taste of what’s to come in the very preface, by warning that this isn’t a typical travel book, and “there will be no f#@&1#g sunsets here”.
The bottom line is - the writing is enjoyable, but the content and conclusions are to be taken with a large grain of salt. If you have a chance to visit China, go and you won’t regret it.
Most recent customer reviews
Leaving conventional protocol behind ,he openly comments on every aspect of China's not so admired , hidden...Read more