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3 Reviews
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new breed of travel writing, 10 Jan 2003
By A Customer
Observant and culturally sensitive, this book opens the door for us to the fascinating world of public bathing in such exotic places as Turkey, Japan, and Russia. The author's writing style is very engaging and I found myself daydreaming about following her trail. I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in good travel writing and, of course, to anyone intrigued by the secret worlds of hamams, onsens, banyas, and finnish saunas.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars quirky and a surprisingly good read, 5 Sep 2005
By A Customer
I must admit I was attracted to this book by its cover, but Iam glad I picked it up. Alexia Brue has a passion for public bathing that leaps from the page. It's almost impossible not to feel enthused yourself as she she shares a view of destinations, some perhaps familiar and others not, that differ from the average travel guide, allowing us to see an intimate picture of a small part of local culture.
It's endearing how she enters the spirit of each local bathing ritual, eager for the experience and ready to learn from the local patrons. Her writing style really helps here as her detailed descriptions of each of the baths and customs are marvellous. The prospect of bathing in many of the places she describes is most inviting - I hope I get the chance to do so.
It's not the sort of book I would usually read, but I do highly recommend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new breed of travel writing, 31 July 2003
By A Customer
One of the oldest, most mysterious and fascinating institutions in the world has found a worthy biographer. Brue brings to life the public bath house as it is experienced today in Japan, Turkey, Russia, and Finnland - turning the pages of her book you feel the steam rising and the smell of herbs in the air. Having been to many of the destinations of her trip myself, I found her to be a very observant and culturally sensitive writer. Most of all, her language makes you dream.
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