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Tracks: a Woman's Solo Trek across 1, 700 Miles of Australian Outback (Vintage Departures) Paperback – 31 Dec 1995

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Books; 1st Vintage Books Ed edition (31 Dec. 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679762876
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679762874
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 1.7 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (95 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,160,573 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

A strong, salty fresh book by an original and individual young woman ... This will rank among the best of the books of exploration and travel and, like them, is a record of self-discovery and self-proving Doris Lessing An absorbing record of human endeavour and courage, a vivid picture of an extraordinary country by a perceptive and sensitive observer, and the story of an inner journey, of "shedding burdens" Sydney Morning Herald It gets to the heart of landscape and solitude and becomes a venture to the interior of more than one dimension as its author approaches the hinterland of her own thorny psyche Observer As eccentric, undisciplined, flashily brilliant and pig-headed as its author ... Ms Davidson is a born writer, her book deeply moving Daily Telegraph Vivid and vivacious ... Davidson is as natural a writer as she is an adventurer New Yorker

Book Description

A revised, reissued edition of this prize-winning, bestselling account of one woman's solo journey across 1,700 miles of Australian Outback --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Fiction_Fan on 23 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The first part of Tracks is spent getting to know Robyn and her desires for this trip. She starts out in a small place called Alice Springs where she learns everything she needs to know before setting out on her journey. It was really refreshing to learn about such a small place in Australia and also how the people there different from those in large cities and towns. This is where Robyn learns how to care for camels, which are one of the largest parts of her trip, and how to look after herself out in the open. The characters that she meets both help and hinder her education.

Not only do you really get to know Robyn and her beliefs but also her camels. I know how strange that might sound but they really have their own personalities and stand out so much from one another. Robyn's relationships with her camels was one of the best aspects of this book for me. After spending so long learning how to care for a camel, how to treat injuries and how to make them work for her instead of against her, these animals were like main characters to me. Their antics made for some funny reading but there are also some quite tense moments with them at the same time.

When I first started reading this book, I imagined there would be quite a lot of boring parts where nothing much happened. As this adventure was trekking across the desert, I figured that this would take up most of the book. It doesn't. I was thankful to Robyn for not writing about these long, boring times where all she did really was walk. I know that this was a big part of her trip and she would have crossed a lot of miles doing just this but it doesn't exactly make for exciting reading. However, there were of course times where some of this is written about but only when something important happened.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jules on 6 Jan. 2014
Format: Paperback
An amazing tale by a remarkable person about an unbelievable achievement. I read this while I was in Australia in some of the locations about which she writes and I really felt I was on her journey with her, so good were her descriptions of people, animals and places.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 9 Sept. 2001
Format: Paperback
I read the book in 3 days. It was excellent to start off with as you follow Robyn training camels. Also her account of life in Alice springs seemed realistic and down to earth. I was disappointed with how the book ended however. I thought she could have gone on to talk about how she readjusted back into 'ordinary' life, and I didn't really understand the relationship she had with the photographer(perhaps she didn't understand it either!!).If he was as irritating as she said she should have dumped him and continued the trip alone as planned. Nevertheless, this intelligent woman was brave and adventurous. It is a good bedside read but it didn't leave me 'on a high' like some books.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Davies on 11 Dec. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book came into my life at exactly the right time. It seemed as though every word that Davidson wrote was intended just for me. Her journey was absolutely incredible and the feeling of frustration that it had been hijacked by the media and, in part, by the National Geographic, was palpable. She was looking to find herself in peace and solitude and, instead, became an unwitting player in a media circus that she resented. It is a book for the lost, for those who are uncertain about their path ahead and who feel as though they are alone, as I felt when I read this. Her book reinvigorated me and I felt as though I was standing with her at the end of her journey, the water around my calves as she bade goodbye to her camels as well.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Read it. Please.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By sos on 7 Mar. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very interesting and well written, but..... Similar in many ways to the book Wild, now also a film. Both authors did the journeys several decades ago in their 20's and both had lost their mother at an early age. Unfortunately, similar to Wild, the author is quite unlikeable. There is also considerably more animal cruelty in this book. I don't understand how she could stand by and watch Kurt almost break his camels leg by beating it with a chain just because it had aimed a kick at him, allow her own camels to be castrated without anaesthetic or antiseptic, likewise the horrific inserting of the splintered nose pegs that caused pain and infection. What is the point of beating a camel after it has come back to you to be caught, cruel and pointless, and no doubt the camel would be harder to catch next time.

A lot of the book is about preparing for the trip and what she thought about things which was longwinded, self obsessive and annoying towards the end. But she doesn't say a thing about her background or previous life or why she is doing the trip. Sex with Rick- that was mentioned once in passing and not referred to again. She hints at supernatural occurances that happened during the trip but doesn't tell us what they were. Would also have liked a postscript of what she did after the walk and what happened to her and the camels after.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dr. H. A. Cowie on 30 April 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I did not believe that I could become so involved in the personalities of camels. How courageous Robyn was on her journey and her writing vividly captures the pain and suffering as well as the elation that she went thorugh on this journey of self-discovery.
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