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26 Reviews
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HungryFeet review
Michael Palin really is getting a bit long in the tooth isn't he? I mean, surely it's time for someone with as much power of observation and unnatural ability to describe their surroundings with clarity to make a name for themselves in the travel writing world. Surely there is some room for one more writer.

John Dwyer might be just the ticket to fill Palin's...
Published on 8 Jun 2012 by scott

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable but very light
This is basically Dwyer's travel journal, as he follows a standard tourist/backpacker route through some parts of Asia. I found it quite enjoyable to read, although if you've been to any of the places you most probably will have had most of the experiences yourself, and if you;re reading it as a 'primer' before you go, don't expect read the book hoping to come away with...
Published 13 months ago by RR


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable but very light, 25 Jun 2013
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This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
This is basically Dwyer's travel journal, as he follows a standard tourist/backpacker route through some parts of Asia. I found it quite enjoyable to read, although if you've been to any of the places you most probably will have had most of the experiences yourself, and if you;re reading it as a 'primer' before you go, don't expect read the book hoping to come away with any deep understanding of the destinations.

The book is very light on information on the places visited aside from the author's impressions. There is virtually no discussion of the history, culture or anything else related to the places visited. Thus the book is mostly composed of the author;s thoughts, with little context nor reflection. Nevertheless, as (very) light reading it is not bad and occasionally quite funny.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars High Road to Tibet - interesting but no depth, 21 Nov 2012
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This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
Every book adds some new perspective and this is a useful quick and ligth read. But as a travel book I found it little more than a travel journal focussing more on the writer's personall experiences and entertainment - interesting though they were at times. As to offering real insight into the place and times, it offers less than a good guide book and fails to add sound perspective. It is easy to read as a travel journal but I found ot rather disappointing. Although the title gives the appearance of coussing on Tiber, (and that may have been the object of the journey) the narrative covers the journey from Beijing through to Kashmir and India.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HungryFeet review, 8 Jun 2012
By 
scott (Douglas, Queensland Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
Michael Palin really is getting a bit long in the tooth isn't he? I mean, surely it's time for someone with as much power of observation and unnatural ability to describe their surroundings with clarity to make a name for themselves in the travel writing world. Surely there is some room for one more writer.

John Dwyer might be just the ticket to fill Palin's well worn shoes. Dwyer's first book, 'High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India,' is a scintillating travelogue of the Irishman's marauding through Asia.

The author starts his backpacking adventure in Beijing, China, with his opening lines introducing us to an infinitely curious friendly culture who see him as a novelty worth oogling. Rather than feel shy about these experiences, Dwyer embraces them and his friendly nature sets the locals at ease and allows them to open up and share their world with him.

Dwyer engages us with his adventures and observations, but cements his writing with Palin-esque historical and social snippets. This depth to his writing brings a context to the sights and people that he crosses paths with. Whether it be his account of the debauchery that was once Shanghai, or his obscure story of the nave but determined mountaineer Maurice Wilson, the author wraps you up into the story and carries you along with him.

Where Dwyer differs from Palin is in his artful descriptions of people. He writes people into the context of their surroundings so well that you can feel them living their life.

"His deeply wrinkled hands rested on an old walking stick as he rocked gently back and forth. Strands of silver hair hung from his balking head to join his long, wispy white beard. He looked like the stereotype of the ancient Chinese philosopher."

Dwyer is not shy of adventure either, and here his humor spills beautifully onto the pages. As he travels through China he discovers James Bond has found a gig recording audio tours of China's Forbidden City in his dotage. He buys a pet snake that turns into lunch. He smuggles himself over the Tibet border in the boot of an old bus. He falls in love, rides the top of a decrepit bus from Kathmandu, has beer bootlegged to him in a teapot and helps a friend take the perfect picture of the Taj Mahal in India.

"A woolly nomad is all a man needs when he feels the cold."

There are two distinct phases to High Road To Tibet. The authors writing is influenced by his solo travels in China and the mood shifts once he reaches Tibet and joins the backpacking crowd for the remainder of his 10 week journey. Instead of being distracting, this change seems to tie in perfectly with the books Tibet climax and refreshes you for the pages to come. A whole new adventure begins and again you are shown another contrast, this time between the solo traveler and the group traveler.

The book does seem to end all too briefly as Dwyer wearies of his travels and yearns to return to his friends and family back in Ireland. However, this hasty ending might just be the readers feeling of loss for the end of the book.

Dwyer's High Road To Tibet is a book to be placed beside Palin's as a writer who writes with depth, passion and a clear insight into the lives of the people he meets.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining and inspiring, 6 July 2011
This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
Really enjoyed this book. Written in a convivial conversational style, the book recounts the travels of the author on his trip of a lifetime from Beijing, across China to Tibet, Nepal and finally New Delhi in India. The author writes with great humour and tells an entertaining, informative and inspiring story of his adventures across Asia. Id recommend this book to anyone with an interest in travel and adventure in fascinating, exotic locations.
A valuable addition to any prospective backpacker's library!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great read - hard to put down, 18 Jan 2012
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This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
A very entertaining and enjoyable read. I've been to a few places that appear in the book and the descriptions are very accurate.

If you've ever wondered about heading to that part of the world, or you already have, this is a must read.

It's very easy to read - I'm not a fast reader by any stretch of the imagination, but couldn't put this down and read it in a few days.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars an insiders view, 9 Oct 2011
By 
R. Connolly "reggiebear" (Cork, Ireland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: High Road To Tibet (Paperback)
this is a great light introduction to China and its idiosyncrasies, I spent two months traveling there this summer and reading the book as i went along... entertaining and fun... it managed to hit all the little oddities that one only sees as they travel... A great read.
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3.0 out of 5 stars just about ok, 15 April 2014
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This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
Not as good as I thought it would be, but I did like how it was honest and critical too
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4.0 out of 5 stars a good read, 26 Nov 2013
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This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
We'll written travel book that helps fuel the imagination about Tibet and Nepal. I like this type of light reading travel book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Mostly pretty accurate, 18 Oct 2011
This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
Good, quick read if you're on your way to Asia and want to get a feel. While most of what is written and the opinions are in line with my own there are a couple of factually incorrect bits. Based on the other reviews I was expecting it to be funnier.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyed.., 21 April 2012
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This review is from: High Road To Tibet - Travels in China, Tibet, Nepal and India (Kindle Edition)
Stumbled upon this book by chance, but thoroughly enjoyed! Well written, enjoyable - finished reading it in a matter of days.

I've been trekking in Nepal (Annapurna region as it happens), as well as a couple of business trips to India. I have immense affection for both countries, so the book brought back many happy memories.

Well worth a read.
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