One hundred terse chapters in not many more pages. Lindqvist has packed a memoir together as challenging as the desert itself. It presents in much the same manner as its companion piece, 'Exterminate All The Brutes,'in a pace rather like air stirring from the baked sand soon after the sun has set. It's a deceptive pace,as it has been slowly generated from a sustained meditation on the literature of French colonialisation, mostly in nineteenth century North Africa, and the way it issued a romanticism with the place (from the 19thC, via Pierre Loti, Isabelle Eberhardt, Andre Gide, de Saint-Exupery, & the author's own confessed romanticism). Lindqvist's research is as poetically pithy as his intermittent memoirs,and the direct, present-day observations during the field work as he traces his literary heroes. His own probing dreams unite the book until the final sentence, when he finds himself firmly gripping empty air. This tension between the received evidence of the literati,his research, and the evidence of his senses, is suitably chastening(though not as diabolically disturbing as colonial violence during the study of Joseph Conrad in 'Exterminate the Brutes'). He recognises that the writer's were, each in their own way, able to live out everything not socially accepted in their own countries & that spiritually, 'the colonies functioned as a vent, as an escape, a place to misbehave.'