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Riding the Desert Trail: By bicycle to the source of the Nile [Paperback]

Bettina Selby
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

16 July 1989
Bettina Selby decided to travel the 4500 mile length of the Nile valley by herself, from the Mediterranean Sea to the great lakes of Central Africa. She designed a special, bright-red "all terrain" bicycle, which took her from the pyramids, the great temples of Luxor and the Valley of the Kings to the Nubian Desert, from Cairo and the hospitality of remote Nile-side villages, to the starving refugee camps of Southern Sudan and from the world of international aid to the terrifying child-soldiers of Uganda. This book describes her impressions of Egypt and her experiences of travelling alone.

Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Abacus; 1st edition (16 July 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0349101213
  • ISBN-13: 978-0349101217
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 13 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,001,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book. 2 Nov 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have read quite a few of Bettina's books now, ( being a fellow cyclist) and she gives her readers a real "feel" for the country. You can feel and experience so much more on two wheels, and she shares this with her readers. I was NOT disappointed with this book, and as always didn't want it to end.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entrancing tale of bicycle adventure 13 Sep 1999
By A Customer
This is a cycling book with a difference. The author has a great enthusiasm for the countries she visits which is a refreshing change from some more self centred travellers.
Her empathy with the people she meets and intrepid nature make her an excellent travel companion
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars didn't take me there 1 Jun 2010
By Jane
I was disappointed in this book. It opens in Cairo traffic and concrete and backtracks into the dull stuff travellers need to do before departure. Once through this uninspiring material though I don't really feel I've arrived. To me, the joy of travel writing is to be taken somewhere wonderful yet Selby didn't do that for me, and I fear I didn't struggle to the end of this book. What I found most astonishing was her judgement of development workers. For example she criticises (based on one distracted conversation) a person who took a degree in Aid and Development then having got some experience realised he didn't have the skills to do a really good job so rather than learning at the expense of the locals, he went back to train as a nurse. For some odd reason Selby believes that poverty is a finite and curable phenomenon and therefore it is wrong to aspire to a career in trying to right the wrongs of paucity of resources and all the other diseases of poverty. And why couldn't we see a photo of Selby on her bike packed for the journeys she made?
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very interesting journey written with style. 21 Oct 2001
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, as it told the amazing journey that she endured, which started with the wonders of Egypt and ended up deep into Africa. It is captivating and inspiring - a very good read.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading 11 April 2004
By J. Jacobs - Published on
An interesting chronicle of a middle-age woman who sets off on a bicycle from upper Egypt to Uganda.
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