Shadow of the Silk Road by Colin Thubron
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Shadow of the Silk Road
By Colin Thubron

Shadow of the Silk Road

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Format: Paperback

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Shadow of the Silk Road by Colin Thubron

Book Description

On buses, donkey carts, trains, jeeps and camels, Colin Thubron traces the drifts of the first great trade route out of the heart of China into the mountains of Central Asia, across northern Afghanistan and the plains of Iran into Kurdish Turkey. Covering over 7000 miles in eight months Thurbron recounts extraordinary adventures - a near-miss with a drunk-driver, incarceration in a Chinese cell during the SARS epidemic, undergoing root canal treatment without anaesthetic in Iran - in inimitable prose. "Shadow of the Silk Road" is about Asia today; a magnificent account of an ancient world in modern ferment.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780099437222
ISBN-10: 0099437228
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 24mm)
Pages: 384
Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 4-Oct-2007
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Shadow of the Silk Road by Colin Thubron

Books By Author Colin Thubron

Night of Fire by Colin Thubron Night of Fire, Hardback (August 2016)

'It began with a spark.' A house is burning. Its six tenants include a failed priest, a naturalist, a neurosurgeon and an invalid dreaming of his anxious boyhood. Their landlord's relationship to them is both intimate and shadowy. He will also share their fate.

Journey into Cyprus by Colin Thubron Journey into Cyprus, Paperback (June 2012)

Describes a journey on foot around Cyprus, an island.This book intertwines myth, history and personal anecdote in a quest from which the characters and places, architecture and landscape all come alive.

Divine Supermarket by Colin Thubron Divine Supermarket, Paperback (May 2012)

Travelling in a battered camping van, Malise Ruthven set out across America in search of the manifestations - often bizarre and sometimes terrifying - of its religious spirit. This book is his zesty and brilliantly-observed account of the journey, offering illuminating and humorous insights into the quirky soul of modern America.

To a Mountain in Tibet by Colin Thubron To a Mountain in Tibet, Paperback / softback (March 2012)

The "New York Times"-bestselling author's dazzling masterpiece, a deeply moving, elegantly written, intimate, and heartrendingly eloquent travel memoir.

» View all books by Colin Thubron


US Kirkus Review » Thubron (In Siberia, 2000, etc.) takes an arduous 7,000-mile journey following the ancient silk trade route from inland China to Turkey's Mediterranean coast.At the very least, his marathon expedition through desert, mountains and war-scarred landscapes testifies to the author's fortitude and resourcefulness. He's quarantined by Chinese authorities during the SARS epidemic, nearly killed by a drunk driver in a head-on collision and forced to endure treatment of an abscessed tooth by a team of Iranian village dentists who don't use anesthetic. Thubron attends a rock concert staged in a Tehran military hospital, dodges suspicious guards at several remote border crossings and searches out the tombs of Genghis Khan, Omar Khayyam and Ayatollah Khomeini. He augments his trenchant narrative with impressive historical background and evocative lyrical prose: "In late autumn the road traversed a near-desert plain. From time to time a faint, brown wash overhung the horizon, as if a watercolorist had started painting mountains there, then forgotten them." Even the most erudite readers, however, may find themselves daunted and disoriented by this lengthy sojourn in such consonant-laden regions as Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, complete with their obscure attendant cultural histories. Until 1498, when the Portuguese sailed around Africa and found a safer route to China's riches, the Silk Road across central Asia was traveled by successions of invaders. East-bound from Rome, Greece and Arabia came poetry, metals and conquering armies. From China, traders carried westward such wonders as silk, paper, gunpowder and the mechanical clock. Thubron carefully picks through the cultural and archeological remains of a half-dozen societies with a discerning eye and a scholar's discipline, pausing to note the fallout from such relatively recent arrivals as China's murderous Red Guards, the Taliban and ruthless Afghan warlords. He also pauses long enough to meet and introduce a host of memorable characters, including a Chinese college dean and some Afghan truck drivers.An impressive, rewarding and occasionally exhausting trek, most suitable for the hardcore travel reader. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Author Biography - Colin Thubron

Colin Thubron is an acknowledged master of travel writing, and the winner of many prizes and awards. His first writing was about the Middle East - Damascus, Lebanon and Cyprus. In 1982 he travelled into the Soviet Union in an ancient Morris Marina, pursued by the KGB, a journey he recorded in Among the Russians. From these early experiences developed his classic travel books: Behind the Wall (winner of the Hawthornden Prize and the Thomas Cook Travel Award), The Lost Heart of Asia, In Siberia (Prix Bouvier), Shadow of the Silk Road and To a Mountain in Tibet (all available in Vintage). In 2010 Colin Thubron became President the Royal Society of Literature.

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