The author of The Back of Beyond continues the chronicle of his odyssey into some of the farthest corners of the world, from the Mountains of the Moon in Zaire, to wilderness Tasmania, to the unknown regions of New Guinea.
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More rollicking end-of-the-road adventures from Yeadon. Yeadon (The Back of Beyond, 1991, etc.), who calls himself ``your average happy traveler,'' now explores nine ``lost worlds,'' blurry regions on the map, where nature still reigns and man is at best a tolerated interloper. First up--and most entrancing--is the Mountains of the Moon, a remote chain of peaks rising from the rain forests of Zaire. Invariably, getting there is half the fun, as Yeadon cruises on an African barge--a floating city, really, with its own government, economy, and teeming masses--smokes pot with Pygmies in the primeval jungle, and feasts on roasted caterpillar. Then on to Venezuela, where he fishes for piranha with llano cowboys, symbol of Latin machismo. In the Venezuelan highlands, he discovers a Catholic hermit and his little hand-built church, the pure white architecture of which brings Yeadon a dash of spiritual awakening. On to Barbuda, an untouristed sliver of land in the Caribbean; to Panama, where he wanders the jungly Darien Gap with Cuna Indians; to the fjords of Chile, which he sails in an orgy of funny self-remonstration (``sailing is for suicidal nuts''); then halfway around the world to Australia's Bungle Bungle, filled with giant termite mounds and otherworldly rock formations, where the author has a brush with death as he nearly drowns in the coral reefs; Tasmania, where he fights leeches in the rain forest; and, finally, the blissful beaches of Fiji, where he dreams of settling down at last. Filled with Yeadon's trademark good humor, contagious love of wandering, and--a new and sometimes awkward element--heavy doses of ecomysticism, sincere but ripe with clich‚. Our advice: Stick to the sights--they're mind-boggling enough. (Line drawings, maps) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Library Journal:
Yeadon, a Yorkshire-born American resident who writes frequently for the Washington Post , National Geographic , and National Geographic Traveler , has found a niche writing about lesser-known places. Here is a somewhat random collection of pieces about places far off the tourist track: Zaire, jungle Panama and Venezuela, the Australian Outback, the southern tips of Chile and Tasmania, and Fiji. No dauntless explorer, Yeadon comes off as an ordinary sort of traveler who sometimes underestimates the rigors of his ventures. Thus, we get plenty of bad weather, leeches, blisters, a corrupt official, some loneliness leading to introspection, and unappetizing food. But through it all, Yeadon's basically cheerful nature, his eye for local characters and ear for their dialog, and his concern for the environment and for native cultures make him one of us--and thus an agreeable travel companion. He also provides charming sketches. Only the maps are substandard: this kind of book requires something much better. This work is recommended for public libraries.
- Harold M. Otness, Southern Oregon State Coll. Lib., Ashland
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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