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One Steppe Beyond: Across Russia in a VW Camper by [Wheeler, Thom]
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One Steppe Beyond: Across Russia in a VW Camper Kindle Edition

3.7 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Length: 305 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Product description

Review

'This well-written account is full of humour, character portraits and information asides.'

(Motorcaravan & Motorhome Monthly)

'Entertaining account of a drive to Vladivostok and the encounters along the way.'

(The Bookseller)

Featured in

(Wanderlust)

'Wheeler's book is an absorbing and entertaining look at Russia's dramatic evolution in the '90s'.'

(Real Travel)

'A wonderfully quirky ride across the former Soviet Union'

(The Trans-Siberian Travel Company)

'This is a book for would be road warriors and seasoned globetrotters alike. Wheeler's travelogue is informative, accessible, and more fun than a banya full of vodka swilling Dmitrys.'

(Library Journal)

'A nice balance of humour and observation, of character and political commentary, One Steppe Beyond should have no trouble finding an audience among armchair travellers.'

(Booklist)

About the Author

Thom Wheeler is a writer with an interest in travel and a particular interest in regions of the ex Soviet Union. He has lived for extended periods of time in Georgia, Estonia, Ukraine and Russia.
He has contributed to various publications, and appeared on BBC Radio and Talk Radio Europe. Thom is the first person to drive a campervan across the Russian Federation (from Tallinn to Vladivostok) - a journey recounted in his book One Steppe Beyond. He lives in Brighton.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1588 KB
  • Print Length: 305 pages
  • Publisher: Summersdale Publishers Ltd (31 Aug. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005KDO29M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #427,782 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I loved this book...It makes me just wanna go and buy an old campervan and head out onto the open road. In todays all too serious world too, Thom Wheeler's 'One Stepp Beyond gives you a welcome antidote to all the austerity and doomongery that pervades most of our daily lives, reminds us that there is still adventure to be had if we just say yes to opportunity, just remain open to 'maybe'.

Having travelled extensively throughout the region too, I really enjoyed the personal commentary on his and his friend's haphazard wanderings, as well as the bite-size insights to the places they visited, without loading the reader with too much 'history'.

This book is a real tonic on a long winter night that's for sure. Will there be a follow up? I hope so Mr Wheeler...Time to crank up 'Max' again and head off into the sunset!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've just finished reading Thom Wheeler's book 'One Steppe Beyond', the story of an epic journey across the ex Soviet Union, and I really enjoyed it. It manages to capture the excitement of youth with an insightful and humourous look at a much unreported part of the world.....all wrapped up in a great story. Aspirational stuff and well worth a look.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
We were traveling in our VW t4 California Exclusive camper from Amsterdam to Vladivostok and back (2014, see wellingfamily.waarbenjij.nu) when we read in the Lonely Planet guide about this book. On returning home after 132 days and 41.000 km I bought this book to see what has changed. Lots. We now have Gps and on line maps so we can always find the way. Also the road (M58) from Chita to Skovorodina and onwards is now complete (albite a bit undulated and hence already under repair). The M53 from Novosibirsk to Krasnoyarsk is now more then a line on some map but actually exists. All in all Russia is open for the entrepenerial tourist.

Tom's book is very entertaining and well written. How he and Jo managed go through with their wild plan of driving Max over some 12,000 km of partialy unpaved roads is comendable. Becuase they were both independant travelers, and in times of stress could both do their own thing, they managed to stay sain (and together during this trip). An epilogue mentioning what happened after Vladivostok to Max, Jo and Thom, would have been nice.

The book is not suitable as a travel guide but gives a good feeling of the atmostfeer in Russia in 1997 after it opened up in 1991 and the first dust had settled.
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Format: Paperback
The thing about Russia is that it's really, really huge. So to write a book about driving across Russia in a campervan is as ambitious as ... well .... actually driving across Russia in a campervan. Thom Wheeler has tackled both with aplomb. He and his partner, Jo, drove from Tallinn, in Estonia, to Vladivostok, a journey of some 10 000km, in Max, their VW campervan.

I visited Tallinn a couple of years ago, and Poland and E Berlin while they were still under Soviet rule, but have never been to Russia so I was really keen to read this book. I was also enticed by the images on the cover. The campervan, the gigantic vodka bottle, the Communist red star and the Kremlin, all in muted colours, reminiscent of the Soviet era, promised to be an interesting read.

This is not a 'personal' narrative; Thom Wheeler has taken a journalistic approach to condense their mammoth journey into just under 300 pages. The book has a wealth of research behind it and is strongly focused on facts and history about the places en route and associated historical figures. The factual stuff is sometimes presented descriptively, in a different font to make it stand out, and other times, in bite-sized chunks of bullet-pointed information, eg: 'Some Facts about Ivan the Terrible' or 'Some Famous Natives of St Petersburg.' I found this presentation of factual information very easy to digest, as it slotted in nicely with the shift from glittering St Petersburg, across the wild interior and Siberia, to the relatively modern port of Vladivostok in the east.

This is an enjoyable and informative read if you're thinking of undertaking a similar journey or would like interesting snippets of Russian history with occasional flashes of humour.
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Format: Paperback
I didn't get much out of this book: it felt superficial and too casual. I found quite a few contradictions in the story too, one of them being that the author studied Russian at university, lived in Russia for several years but still finds it almost impossible to communicate with and understand the locals...
There is almost nothing on the dynamic between the author and his companion. There is too little on the lives and the culture of the different ethnic groups of Siberia.
Overall, I struggled to find this book interesting and readable.
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Format: Paperback
A raw and gritty ruble infused rollercoaster of a travelogue following the exploits of a pair of crazy English travellers who decided to drive a campervan across post-Soviet Russia from St Petersburg to Vladivostock. Its honest,intimate, informative and poignant at times, as we follow the intrepid pair's trail through forests and frozen plains, backstreet garages and mafioso infested ghost-towns to their final destination. Fancy a different, hearty read that's infused with beatnik abandon, then I heartily recommend this book!
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