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The Road to McCarthy Audio Cassette – Audiobook, 3 Mar 2003

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Product details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton Audio Books; Abridged edition edition (3 Mar 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1840324341
  • ISBN-13: 978-1840324341
  • Product Dimensions: 13.4 x 10.6 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,371,082 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful By "claudewangen" on 20 July 2002
Format: Hardcover
"Relentless pursuit of the non-existent by the clueless armed with the unworkable is bound to turn up something sooner or later" writes Pete McCarthy in his second book. He certainly is not clueless and what he turns up is definitely worth the detour - a detour that has us follow him Tangiers via Macquarie to Montserrat.
Full of witty observations, wonderful anecdotes, hilarious characters, "The Road to McCarthy" is a dangerous read if you're sitting on your own in a public place: you may well pass for a nutter, choking with laughter for no apparent reason. There you are: you have been warned !
And to end in McCarthy's words: "Travel can be full of surprises. Sometimes they're not even the surprises you expect."
All that remains is to re-read "McCarthy's Bar" while we wait for his next travel logbook.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Hilary Jane on 5 Mar 2003
Format: Hardcover
It seems that you either like Pete McCarthy or you don't. Since The Road to McCarthy is pretty much volume two of McCarthy's Bar, it won't be too difficult for most of us to decide whether we want to read it.
This time around, McCarthy's lengthy pub crawls, sticky ferry trips and sporadic reflections on roots, religion and the heritage industry cover a wider area of the world map. Otherwise, it's really more of the same.
And that's fine by me. I love McCarthy's writing. I find it wry, witty, self-deprecating and deceptively sharp. And yes, it does make me laugh out loud on the bus. But beneath the blokey banter there are genuine and surprisingly subtle insights into some of the big issues facing twenty first century westerners.
For McCarthy, these are mostly to do with working out a sense of belonging in an increasingly dislocated, commercialised and globalising culture. Neither fully English nor fully Irish, and not truly at home in either place, it's not surprising that he uses travel writing to pursue his theme.
McCarthy is particularly good on the human need to build some kind of sensible narrative around our lives. Pointing out that no-one wants to live their life as experimental drama, he puts up quite a defence for the exploding interest in genealogy and the quest for a family story, which many of us have learnt to dismiss with a sophisticated sneer. He certainly pushed me to rethink that one.
Maybe it's an age thing - I probably wouldn't have felt this when I was twenty five - but I'm quite happy to give McCarthy's favourite themes a second go. And if they are surrounded by some entertaining but perceptive and thought provoking descriptions of his life and times in New York, Tasmania and several points in between, then that's fine too.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ben Groves on 11 Jun 2003
Format: Paperback
The Road to McCarthy is one of my favourite travel books. Pete manages to fit in Europe, Africa and North America in one book as well as Monserrat which adds interest to the book for those who like to see a bit of contrast in travel writing. This time the book is centred around Pete travelling the world in search of the McCarthy clan similar to in McCarthy’s bar but on a world scale thou don’t worry the book is not repetitive or a rehash of McCarthy’s bar. I think this book is very funny and informative in a cultural and historic way. There are a few jokes that you may be at an advantage to reading McCarthy’s bar first but not so many as to put the reader at a disadvantage if this is your first Pete McCarthy book. The book is well written and is full of action and adventure from roaming round the streets of Tangier being lead by a local guide (nail biting for the reader too!!) to flying into the remote town of McCarthy in Alaska this book never fails to be exciting.
Fun, Exciting, fans of McCarthy’s bar will not be disappointed.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Victoria Craven on 2 July 2004
Format: Paperback
It was always going to be difficult for Pete McCarthy to match the runaway success he had with the wonderful McCarthy's Bar. I was fully prepared for disappointment upon opening the second book, and am therefore pleased to announce that it is nothing short of brilliant. Fans of the author will be aware of his fondness for obscure places and unwavering ability to land himself in ridiculous and often bizarre situations.
The Road to McCarthy is similar to its predecessor in the sense that it once again follows Pete on his quest for identity: He explores his roots - just as he did last time around - and stumbles upon the history of the McCarthy clan, and the supposed McCarthy Mor. Sounds unusual - far-fetched even? That's because it is. Far from tainiting the feel of the book however, it adds a mysterious quality and sees the author trekking the globe in a highly unusual detective adventure. McCarthy frequently reprises his role of teacher and historian as he lapses into fact mode, interspersed with tales of the unusual people and places he encounters on his travels. So entertaining are the accounts of events he has witnessed or conversations he has taken part in, that I frequently found myself asking 'how does he FIND these people?' The answer is simple; they flock to him. He is a magnet for strange personalities, and thank God he is because I haven't enjoyed a book this much in a long time.
The author journeys further afield in this book than the last, with his adventure taking him to Montserrat, Montana and Tasmania. It was the section set in the latter that I found the most interesting, with its often moving documentation of convict settlements upon the Australian island. It's certainly eye-opening, and I frequently found myself staring at the words in disbelief.
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