Spanish Steps: Travels With My Donkey

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9780099471943: Spanish Steps: Travels With My Donkey

Being larger than a cat, the donkey is the kind of animal Tim Moore is slightly scared of. Yet intrigued by epic accounts of a pilgrimage undertaken by one in three medieval Europeans, and committed to historical authenticity, he finds himself leading a Pyrenean ass named Shinto into Spain, headed for Santiago de Compostela.

Over 500 miles of extreme weather and agonising bestial sloth, it becomes memorably apparent that for the multinational band of eccentrics who keep the Santiagan flame alive, the pilgrimage has evolved from a purely devotional undertaking into a mobile therapist's couch.

Ludicrous, heart-warming and improbably inspirational, Spanish Steps is the story of what happens when a rather silly man tries to walk all the way across a very large country, with a very large animal who doesn't really want to.

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Review:

If Tim Moore's Spanish Steps is a prime example of a new kind of travel writing--sardonically funny, quirkily observed and full of bizarre detail--that's good news for readers; if Bill Bryson has forged a whole new genre, who can complain if other writers plough similar fields? Particularly if they do it with as much gusto as Tim Moore. In fact, Moore is actually a rather more penetrating writer than the better-known Bryson, and this tale of a foolhardy pilgrimage with a recalcitrant donkey makes some salient points in between the healthy crop of stinging one-liners.

Moore had been fascinated by stories he'd heard of pilgrimages which many Europeans had taken through sultry and unwelcoming Spanish terrain to Santiago de Compostela. The sub-title says it all: "One Man and his Ass on the Pilgrim Way to Santiago"--and Moore's treacherous donkey is as much a character as the bizarre dramatis personae the author encounters. Everything is against him: weather that saps his resolve at every step of the way, impossible dormitories (some of the funniest sections of the book), eccentric fellow travellers, and an animal that, if it could speak, would be constantly asking "is this journey really necessary?"

Amid the acres of scary impediments that fall into Moore's path, a whole host of detail crowds in that makes Spain come to vivid life: we're given a seat-of-the-pants experience quite as memorable (and occasionally painful) as the author's. The descriptions are priceless:

Unexpected confrontation with full-frontal, Pilsner-bellied German nudity was an occupational hazard in any refugio bathroom… (the man's) wrinkled pilgrim parts now rested on the rim of the sink I was waiting to clean my teeth in…
But many serious points are made--always lightly--about a million subjects (not least the lessons of history) in the delightful pages of Spanish Steps. -- Barry Forshaw

Review:

"He is a rare comic talent" ( The Times)

"A very funny writer, oozing with comic ideas" ( Daily Mail)

"An absolutely cracking idea for a book; it's got history, eccentric characters, personal growth - and plenty of really good jokes" ( Time Out)

"One of the classier writers of the humorous travel book... A very entertaining read" ( Observer)

"At last, a travel book that makes you think but also makes you laugh out loud" ( Guardian)

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 196 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Being larger than a cat, the donkey is the kind of animal Tim Moore is slightly scared of. Yet intrigued by epic accounts of a pilgrimage undertaken by one in three medieval Europeans, and committed to historical authenticity, he finds himself leading a Pyrenean ass named Shinto into Spain, headed for Santiago de Compostela. Over 500 miles of extreme weather and agonising bestial sloth, it becomes memorably apparent that for the multinational band of eccentrics who keep the Santiagan flame alive, the pilgrimage has evolved from a purely devotional undertaking into a mobile therapist s couch. Ludicrous, heart-warming and improbably inspirational, Spanish Steps is the story of what happens when a rather silly man tries to walk all the way across a very large country, with a very large animal who doesn t really want to. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099471943

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 196 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Being larger than a cat, the donkey is the kind of animal Tim Moore is slightly scared of. Yet intrigued by epic accounts of a pilgrimage undertaken by one in three medieval Europeans, and committed to historical authenticity, he finds himself leading a Pyrenean ass named Shinto into Spain, headed for Santiago de Compostela. Over 500 miles of extreme weather and agonising bestial sloth, it becomes memorably apparent that for the multinational band of eccentrics who keep the Santiagan flame alive, the pilgrimage has evolved from a purely devotional undertaking into a mobile therapist s couch. Ludicrous, heart-warming and improbably inspirational, Spanish Steps is the story of what happens when a rather silly man tries to walk all the way across a very large country, with a very large animal who doesn t really want to. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099471943

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Book Description 2005. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 129mm x 198mm x 22mm. Paperback. Being larger than a cat, the donkey is the kind of animal Tim Moore is slightly scared of. Yet intrigued by epic accounts of a pilgrimage undertaken by one in three medieval Europeans, and.Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 336 pages. 0.246. Bookseller Inventory # 9780099471943

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Book Description Vintage Publishing. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, Spanish Steps, Tim Moore, Being larger than a cat, the donkey is the kind of animal Tim Moore is slightly scared of. Yet intrigued by epic accounts of a pilgrimage undertaken by one in three medieval Europeans, and committed to historical authenticity, he finds himself leading a Pyrenean ass named Shinto into Spain, headed for Santiago de Compostela. Over 500 miles of extreme weather and agonising bestial sloth, it becomes memorably apparent that for the multinational band of eccentrics who keep the Santiagan flame alive, the pilgrimage has evolved from a purely devotional undertaking into a mobile therapist's couch. Ludicrous, heart-warming and improbably inspirational, Spanish Steps is the story of what happens when a rather silly man tries to walk all the way across a very large country, with a very large animal who doesn't really want to. Bookseller Inventory # B9780099471943

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