Ghost Train to the Eastern Star characters ð 104

Summary Ø PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ✓ Paul Theroux

To the ePUB #180 National BestsellerIn Ghost Train to the Eastern Star Theroux recreates an epic journey he took thirty years ago a giant loop by train mostly through Eastern Europe Ghost Train MOBI #198 Turkey the Caucasus Central Asia the Indian Subcontinent China Japan and Siberia In short he traverses all of Asia top to bottom and end to end In the Train to the Epub #218 three decades since he first travelled this route Asia has undergone phenomenal change The Soviet Union has collapsed Chin. Over three decades after the series of train journeys which he described in The Great Railway BazarPaul Theroux is back following his own footsteps recreating those journeysand adds some new destinations as wellI liked this book even than The Great Railway BazarThere was one disappointmenthoweverThis time he didn't venture into PakistanWhatever was happening in the country at the timeprompted him to steer clearAt the very starthe criticizes his own kindtravel writing is a license to borethe lowest form of literary self indulgence That is a statement I disagree withAt that timeGeorge WBush had started the US invasion of IraRefreshinglyTheroux castigates Bush and calls him a moronDuring his travelshe talked to hundreds of people and found only twowho had a favourable impression of BushHe sets off through the countries of Eastern EuropeHe finds Romania very cheerlessHe goes to Georgia and finds a man who has made it his life's mission to feed hungry peopleHe admires the beauty of Istanbul and likes Turkeydespite the negative views of the country in much of EuropeOne of the most interesting chapters deals with his visit to TurkmenistanIt was a closed countryunder the repressive rule of Supermurat Niyazov Turkmenbashithe father of the TurkmenHis whims were lawgiant statues of himsome in gold were everywhereHe had even renamed the months of the year and the days of the weekIt was a bizarre personality cultThere are some countries given short shrift by TherouxHe gets out of China very uicklysaying that all the Chinese wanted was to talk about moneyHis visit to Uzbekistan is also dealt with very uicklyHe doesn't describe Bokharahe skips Samarkandhe has nothing to say about Tashkent or Uzbekistan's presidentKarimovIn Vietnamhe is amazed to find that the Vietnamese do not talk all that much about America's warand are friendly towards himeven though he is an AmericanHe cannot help reflecting that Vietnam suffered millions of casualties as against America's 58000 and the US dropped millions of pounds of bombs on the countryand didn't leave even a useful buildingIn Cambodiahe talks about the horrors of the Pol Pot regime and the millions who died during that periodSingapore is another country about which he has plenty to sayFor all its prosperitystate control is all encompassingEveryone is being watched all the time and people are encouraged to spy on othersIt is a social experimentation laboratoryHe is not too impressed with Lee Kuan YewSingapore's founding fatherHe spends a fair bit of time in Indiafrom Amritsar to overcrowded MumbaiChennai and then to the tech hub of Bangalorewith its new found prosperityBut Bangalore doesn't impress him muchIn Indiahe also meets Prince Charles and his frumpy wifeCamillaHe is appalled by India's rampaging population and the number of people who live below the poverty lineIn Sri Lankahe finally gets to meet science fiction writer Arthur C Clarkethe man who never grew up and yet grew all the time Thenit's on to Japanwhere he feels alienated in TokyoIn a homogenized culture he feels like a complete outsiderBut as a compensationhe spends time with Haruki Marukamiwho talks about the devastating impact of World War II on JapanTheroux also catches up with the travel writerPico Iyer in JapanAs usualhe is interested in the adult entertainment industry in Japanand for that matterin all the countries he visitsThailand and Laos are among his destinations tooOn the final leg of his triphe is back on Russian trainswhich seem unchanged from thirty years agoHe spends a lot of time in that snowbound landscape on those dreary trainsvisiting places where forced labour camps existed under StalinHis conclusion about the new Russia is that it hasn't really changedDespite the wealth enjoyed by someRussia remains as oppressive as everIt is a grueling journey and there is a lot of mileageand that too on trainsnot necessarily the most comfortable mode of t

review Ghost Train to the Eastern Star

Ghost Train to the Eastern StarA has risen India booms Burma slowly smothers and Vietnam prospers despite the havoc unleashed upon it the last time Theroux passed through He witnesses all this and so much in a mile journey travelling as the locals do by train car bus and footHis odyssey takes him from Eastern Europe still hungover from Communism through tense but thriving Turkey into the Caucasus where Georgia limps back toward feudalism while its neighbour Azerbaijan revels in oil driven capitalism As he penetrates deeper in. Thirty years have passed when Paul decides to retrace the journey he made in The Great Railway Bazaar Due to circumstances he isn't able to duplicate it exactly and has to miss some bits He does manage to get into some places he was unable to visit during his first trip so that's a plusThe pleasure of this book is doubled because we get to read how the places have changed AND we get to hear Paul's thoughts as he compares the trips including insights into his personal life He visits with many interesting 'common' folks and some illustrious ones as well such as Pico Iyer and Arthur C Clarke and it's a pleasure to eavesdrop on their conversationsI very much enjoyed this book I love when the pages and the time just zips by and before I know it I've finished the book Well I don't enjoy the 'finishing the book' part as I'd like it to continue of course I like Paul's writing It flows It effortlessly pulls me along To paraphrase the song Summertime Reading Theroux and the reading is easy I don't have to stop and think What did he just say and re read bits over I can almost forget I am reading and begin to feel like I'm sitting next to him on the train Now that's what a travel book should do Paul is a voracious reader and I like picking up recommendations on books that he mentions tooNot everyone likes Paul's books but variety is the spice of life yesA Goodreads friend Chrissie sums up my view on Paul's books Theroux’s non fiction books can scarcely be classified as travel books They are not tourist guides not for those planning to travel to the countries Theroux visits The places he visits are not the places tourists visit He is there for the ride He is there to observe the people just ordinary people What he delivers are his personal thoughts on what he sees and the people he meets We peek into Theroux’s head you learn both about the author and about places You learn about the countries the mentality of the people living there and the feel of the land4 Stars Outstanding It definitely held my interest

Paul Theroux ✓ 4 characters

Ghost Train to the Eastern Star characters ð 104 À ✅ [PDF / Epub] ☉ Ghost Train to the Eastern Star By Paul Theroux ⚣ – National BestsellerIn Ghost Train to the Eastern Star Theroux recreates an epic journey he took thirty years ago a giant loop by train mostly through Eastern Europe Turkey theTo Asia’s heart his encounters take on an otherworldly cast The two chapters that follow show us Turkmenistan a profoundly isolated society at the mercy of an almost comically egotistical dictator and Uzbekistan a ruthless authoritarian state From there he retraces his steps through India Mayanmar China and Japan providing his penetrating observations on the changes these countries have undergoneBrilliant caustic and totally addictive Ghost Train to the Eastern Star is Theroux at his very best. The reader who opens the first page of a travel book is about to embark upon a journey with the author; it helps if they are compatible people Having travelled profitably with Theroux previously I found in this book that I came progressively to dislike him and The tipping point was Singapore In earlier days as a lecturer there Theroux was apparently badly treated Now decades later he takes his calculated revenge in a long chapter portraying the Lee Kwan Yew regime as harsh and unreasonably punitive and then goes on to suggest by portraying the city's sleazy underbelly that the regime is a failure anyway Gotcha with both barrelsAnd herein lies the key to the book Ostensibly a smart notion to retrace a journey made 33 years earlier and record what has changed the author is interested in observing himself A strange person emerges One who is overly interested in the sex industry always at arm's length you understand I walked on but never failing to record an encounter Yet where gambling might also be considered a vice worth investigating Theroux never ventures inside one of the many casinos he mentions He finds croupiers less interesting than prostitutesThere are curious digressions Sport clearly does not engage him He attends a cricket match in India betrays no understanding of the gamesomeone is caught leg before wicket and leaves before the end On the subject of polo Kipling whom he uotes liberally should have led him to refer to ponies not horses Ballet too is a problem A performance of Giselle' is dismissed as waving arms and legs while The Sleeping Beauty sends him to sleepNo such patronising attitude is taken towards the author's own field There is a long chapter in which a walk in Japan through shrines and temples and ornamental gardens is merely the background to a discussion of other travel writers not all of whom are admired The name dropping is comparable to the identifying of this or that remote village seen from a train window of which there are numerous instancesPaul Theroux one fears is chielly interested in himself a subject he could have observed without getting on a trainPaul Theroux one fears is chielly interested in himself a subject he could have observed without getting on a train