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From Souk to Souk: Travels Through the Middle East Paperback – 28 Mar 2014


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Matador (28 Mar 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1783062800
  • ISBN-13: 978-1783062805
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 633,277 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robin Ratchford has lived in six different countries and visited more than a hundred others and their territories on all seven continents. Looking back, he thinks collecting colourful stamps from the age of six first sparked his interest in foreign countries and cultures all over the world. Robin has a background in international affairs, and travel, adventure and discovery are central themes in his life.

The people he meets and the cultures he has experienced are a constant inspiration for Robin's writing. Like many writers, he blends personal experience and observation with imagination. Robin's love of the spoken and written word is not limited to English: he counts learning and improving his knowledge of several European languages among his constant passions.

Born in the United Kingdom, Robin is currently based in Belgium where he lives with his faithful companion Mortimer the Fox Terrier.

Find out more at: www.robinratchford.com


Product Description

About the Author

Robin Ratchford has lived in six different countries and visited more than a hundred others. Travel, adventure and discovery are central themes in his life and a constant inspiration for his writing. Born in the United Kingdom, Robin is currently based in Belgium, where he lives with his faithful companion Mortimer the Fox Terrier.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr Danny M Stafford on 7 April 2014
Format: Paperback
Ratchford's accounts are emotive and curiously descriptive. Each story is short enough to enjoy on a train ride and long enough to draw a detailed and captivating depiction of the Middle East; far removed from the images strewn across mainstream western news media.
Ratchford has a talent for twisting innocuous happenings and chance conversations into fully-formed narratives with memorable characters drawn from life. Highly recommended for those looking to escape on a morning commute or clear their head by lamp-light before bed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dale Stafford on 19 April 2014
Format: Paperback
Looking at things from a different angle is one of my favorite personal pursuits and Souk to Souk hits that spot perfectly in regard to the Middle East. It's a fabulous counterpoint to all the negative and disturbing reports and images we're bombarded with daily by the media. If you love to travel; are interested in getting behind what's peddled in the press; and above all if you're interested in people as well as places, this book's for you.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ann Bennett on 3 April 2014
Format: Paperback
This book is an absolute joy to read! The author's beautifully descriptive writing paints vivid pictures of the places he has visited in the Middle East and the people he has met, such that I felt I was actually there with him as his travelling companion, living through every experience and soaking up not only the excitement of it all, but feeling the whole gamut of human emotions. The atmosphere, aromas, colours and vibrancy of the souks is captured so that one is immediately transported into a different world. The book is in turns exciting, amusing, entertaining, thought-provoking and informative, educating the reader in a gently absorbing way. I would highly recommend this travelogue, where the author makes a deep impact with his flowing and captivating style of writing that leaves the reader hungry with desire to visit the places described.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pukka Sahib on 2 April 2014
Format: Paperback
In this collection of stories, a new travel writer takes the reader to cities all over the Muslim world, from Turkey to Afghanistan, Iraq to Qatar. But the stories are not about glorious tales of courage experienced by a hero writer. Instead, they are about seemingly undramatic encounters and events, described with a very perceptive eye for character and atmosphere and a discreet sense of humour. My favourite stories are about Aleppo and Kabul. Both grasped me with their atmospheric descriptions, pulling me right into the story. Reading this book, I was reminded of many almost forgotten memories of travelling in the Middle East. And I am now eager to travel to several of the other places described here in such a senstitive and personal style. Looking forward to reading more from this author!
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Format: Paperback
I have to say that I am not a regular reader of 'travelogues' which are usually cobbled together articles written by journalists paid to go to "interesting" places and write about how much of a struggle it was. This is not one of those books. It guides you subtly but carefully around the Middle East - not as a guidebook, but not so that you marvel at the access this special person got to the secret hidden lairs that you will never see yourself. More as a friend back from their travels, eager to inspire you to go yourself. Marvellous.
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Format: Kindle Edition
An interesting and highly personal travel book, in which the author travels to various Middle East destinations, from tourist-friendly cities such as Istanbul, to places which most of us would not care to visit, such as Kabul. The writing is vividly descriptive, and this was an informative and entertaining read.

Reviewed in exchange for a preview Kindle copy.
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By Deborah on 4 Aug 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
What an interesting book. ‘From Souk to Souk’ is a fun and very informative ‘alternative’ travel guide of short stories. Some chapters I found particularly pertinent, describing places I have already visited or am soon to do so. All chapters were highly entertaining and beautifully descriptive. A very enjoyable read.
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Format: Paperback
This travel book is a collection of gripping short stories, beautifully written with immense insight and sharp observation. In the language of a passionate explorer they movingly tell of a life in countries of the Middle East we might have a preconceived idea about. Be this due to our association with war, extreme poverty or absurd wealth. This book is a treasure for anyone who wants to get a real flavor about the present day situation of places we once remembered from the tales of 1001 Nights.
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