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Tracks Paperback – 9 Jan 1998


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Product details

  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; New edition edition (9 Jan. 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330368613
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330368612
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.6 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 723,631 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

The prize-winning, bestselling account of one woman's solo journey across 1,700 miles of Australian Outback - now a major motion picture --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 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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10 of 10 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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6 of 6 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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1 of 1 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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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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By Venyhamin on 14 July 2014
Format: Paperback
‘Tracks’ is an inspirational book of how one young woman walked from Alice Springs to the Indian Ocean in 1977 accompanied by three camels and a dog. She is rightly indignant at the treatment of the Aboriginals since the first Europeans landed to how they continued to be treated during her travels. Sadly my own experience of being in outback Western Australia in 2001 confirms that for some those attitudes have not changed. The late seventies however was a period of change as the idealism of the sixties and early seventies gave way to a harsher pragmatism. There is a great line early on in the book about how many of the world’s angriest feminists have hailed from Australia who left as soon as they were able to.

The book also goes into much more detail than the recent film which inevitably jettisoned some incidents and of course authorial inner insights are also lost in order to tell a more simplified and linear story. The complex relationship between the author and the photographer from ‘National Geographic’ who sponsored the trip is also much more drawn out than in the film. Where the book really excels and what the film hinted at in some of its more memorable images is in how something as simple as walking, albeit in one of the most beautiful and harshest landscapes in the world, can be transmogrified into an experience as the author herself says akin to the Dreamtime. ‘Tracks’ is an affirmation that life is much more about doing what is expected of us and finding the time to follow a passion whatever that might be. ‘Camel trips do not begin or end, they merely change form’.
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