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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable account of travelling in Peru in the 80s
Initially I was reluctant to buy this book because I was looking for books about contemporary Peru when I first went there in 1997. Inca Kola was written in the late 80s, when Peru was on the verge of collapsing into chaos and civil war, and the political situation was completely different from now or even the late 90s. I thought a book from the 80s would be hopelessly...
Published on 2 Mar. 2007 by James Christie

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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good read - but a bit out of date
I brought "Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru" with me to Peru this summer.
The book is well-written and a good read, as the other reviewers have written. However, I found the book a bit outdated - it is (almost) 15 years ago, Mr Parris visited Peru, and the country has come a long way since. Especially in the last decade.
This does not make the book bad per...
Published on 11 July 2004 by Ulrik Groenborg


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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable account of travelling in Peru in the 80s, 2 Mar. 2007
By 
James Christie (Perth, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
Initially I was reluctant to buy this book because I was looking for books about contemporary Peru when I first went there in 1997. Inca Kola was written in the late 80s, when Peru was on the verge of collapsing into chaos and civil war, and the political situation was completely different from now or even the late 90s. I thought a book from the 80s would be hopelessly dated.

However, I eventually bought it after my third trip to Peru, and found it to be a delightful account of visiting a country I'd come to know a little, and love a lot.

Yes, some things have changed dramatically since Parris's trip. The political and security situation is far, far better, but serious poverty, inequality and racism remain. So much of what Parris writes about is instantly recognisable. Peruvian culture won't change in a hurry and neither will the people - warm, incredibly hospitable and nosy, utterly cavalier and irresponsible in dealing with regulations and authority.

Much of Parris's book is timeless, and most of the rest is a fascinating account of visiting Peru at a time when no sensible tourists wanted to go there. It's a delight to read.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good read - but a bit out of date, 11 July 2004
This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
I brought "Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru" with me to Peru this summer.
The book is well-written and a good read, as the other reviewers have written. However, I found the book a bit outdated - it is (almost) 15 years ago, Mr Parris visited Peru, and the country has come a long way since. Especially in the last decade.
This does not make the book bad per se - it is still OK.
I recommed the book "The Gringo Trail" as an better, new, alternative read. It covers more countries than "just" Peru, but is just as witty and thought-provoking.
Or you can do like me, and buy them both;-)
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42 of 45 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A must if you're going to visit Peru, 23 Sept. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
This is a very good book and a must if you're going travelling to Peru. Matthew Parris and three of his friends go on a Peruvian adventure. Nothing is planned and they're are encountered in some interesting and some hilarious situations. Parris does a great job in portraing current day Peru in a very entertaining manner. I found it very readable, very entertaining, but more importantly it gave me an insight on what to expect and the do's and dont's when I visit Peru. If you want to read anything about current day Peru, read this book first.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming book, 8 Dec. 2013
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This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
Backpackers tales about exotic and faraway places are ten-a-penny. Some completely miss the nuances of the cultures of the places that they visit but this hits the nail on the head in so many ways.

I had been to Peru before and was planning a trip with my wife and looked to find a decent book that might give her some idea as to what Peru was like, the joys, the frustrations, the alien culture and general observations. Although it was written twenty years before our trip it was still relevant - despite the huge changes that the country has gone through. Whilst there are (sadly) many Western-style bars and restaurants, vastly improved transport links, comfortable accommodation with hot water in remote areas, better communications, ATMs and internet cafes in even the smallest towns, the warmth of the people of Peru shines-though this book like it has on my visits. LIkewise, there is still the shocking poverty, frustrating bureaucracy to completed even for many simple things like buying a mobile phone sim card or buying a bus ticket.

We loved Peru and when reading it again after coming back found that Matthew Parris' book really captures many aspects of this fantastic country.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great travel fun, 7 Jun. 2003
By 
C. Goff (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
When I decided to go and work in Peru, I looked for every book available about the country. In 1996, this involved a lot of really dire stuff about Sendero Luminoso, the horrible terrorists that had been recently shut down. This book was a notable exception.
The book chronicles a trip through Peru by a group of fun-loving, adventurous, culturally reflective guys. It is funny, irreverent, and respectful. Think of it as a Tim Cahill type of book. It is a great read, and gives a very positive perspective on the truly wonderful people of Peru, as well as some of the difficulties endemic to traveling there. Highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Peru twenty years on, 9 Mar. 2009
By 
Mrs. Je Carmichael "JaneyC" (Germany) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
I read this book while travelling in Peru, and found it very interesting to compare my experience with that of the author and his friends. Many things have not changed an iota, from the people's love of Inca Kola to the crazy markets laden with every type of potato and maize you could ever need. I enjoyed comparing my trip with Matthew Parris' journey - life as a backpacker is pretty easy now compared to some of the things they underwent, and I'm glad I didn't have to squeeze into a lorry and get covered in oil. It was fun to examine travelling in another era at the same time as I was appreciating the benefits of internet, clean hostels and comfortable transport. Definitely worth a read if you are thinking of heading to Peru or South America, and good for me when I feel like I want to conjure up my travels once more.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awe inspiring..., 16 Mar. 2004
This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
'Inca Kola' is an infusion of fascinating description and humour. You find yourself travelling alongside Matthew Parris & his companions as you become immersed in this exhilarating traveller's tale.
I found myself so absorbed in Parris' journey, that I am inspired to travel around Peru myself. One of the most enchanting stories i've had the pleasure of reading.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant. Thought provoking and funny too., 20 Aug. 2003
This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
What a life this man has had! This great little book is jam packed full of travel genre scrapes and adventures, historical and cultural insights and bizarre recollections from the author. A wonderful read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars No politics please, I am British., 28 Oct. 2014
By 
Ce Moore - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
A very good read. M.Parris is a good writer and his story is both enjoyable to read and informative about Peru. The only criticism that I could throw at the author ( and it may not even be justified if M. Parris had decided that it has no part in his story ) has to do with him being a politician, a Tory, who travels in a very poor third world country but never confronts his own politics or say much about how his values may have been changed by his experience in Peru.

Otherwise, the book is a very good read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Awed by an antique land, 5 Aug. 2013
By 
Martin Davies (Ibiza) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru (Paperback)
Latin America was never my thing, so I pulled this book from the shelf in a moment of desperation (it was a gift). Within seconds I'd fallen under Parris's spell as he ventured boldly through the dark underbelly of this astonishing land, encountering colourful natives and visitors alike. An astonishing empathy towards others, however unsavoury, illuminates this chronicle with a rare humanity, while the author's readiness to really rough it guarantees an armchair odyssey of the highest order. Inspirational!
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Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru
Inca Kola: A Traveller's Tale of Peru by Matthew Parris (Paperback - 5 Aug. 1993)
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