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The Train in Spain Hardcover – 7 Nov 2013

3.6 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Continuum; 1st Edition edition (7 Nov. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1441198059
  • ISBN-13: 978-1441198051
  • Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 2.6 x 22.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 269,623 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

On his 3,000 mile trip around Spain, [Christopher Howse] is less benevolent than Michael Palin and, much more interestingly, a blend of two great travel writers, the magisterial literary flâneur Norman Douglas and the romantically nostalgic Norman Lewis,Christopher Howse has a good eye for detail... [and] a wealth of historical, etymological (every place name is explained) and statistical information at his fingertips... This book is an interesting read for anyone who loves Spain.,This is a book by a man who both understands and loves Spain, the way time expands there, so that, as Gerald Brenan once said, an hour in Spain can seem like a week in another country. It is worth buying alone for the descriptions of hearty traditional dishes, more valuable than all the arcane inventions of Ferrán Adriá...This is a small classic, worth its place on the shelf alongside the works of the other great eccentric British hispanophiles, Richard Ford, George Borrow and Gerald Brenan.,His description of scenes Spanish will often have his readers smiling, and sometimes laughing aloud. His book is essential reading for those following him to those parts, whether they risk doing so by train or not.,Christopher Howse, in his offbeat book The Train in Spain, prefers slow trains, and particularly those that meander along single tracks in obscure parts of the country.,We come to love his quiet and self-effacing personal honesty, the unhurried pace, the acutely observant eye, the dry non-judgmental humour and the opening up of obscure alleyways of knowledge,His has been an illuminating odyssey through a country he obviously loves. He rekindles the desire to visit Spain and provides a charmingly erudite companion for the journey. --No Review Available

This is a book by a man who both understands and loves Spain, the way time expands there, so that, as Gerald Brenan once said, an hour in Spain can seem like a week in another country. It is worth buying alone for the descriptions of hearty traditional dishes, more valuable than all the arcane inventions of Ferrán Adriá...This is a small classic, worth its place on the shelf alongside the works of the other great eccentric British hispanophiles, Richard Ford, George Borrow and Gerald Brenan. - Harry Eyres, The Spectator

His description of scenes Spanish will often have his readers smiling, and sometimes laughing aloud. His book is essential reading for those following him to those parts, whether they risk doing so by train or not. --Peter Linehan, The Tablet

Christopher Howse, in his offbeat book The Train in Spain, prefers slow trains, and particularly those that meander along single tracks in obscure parts of the country. - William Chislett, Times Literary Supplement

We come to love his quiet and self-effacing personal honesty, the unhurried pace, the acutely observant eye, the dry non-judgmental humour and the opening up of obscure alleyways of knowledge - Barnaby Rogerson, Daily Telegraph

His has been an illuminating odyssey through a country he obviously loves. He rekindles the desire to visit Spain and provides a charmingly erudite companion for the journey. --Simon Scott Plummer, Standpoint

About the Author

Christopher Howse is an assistant editor of The Daily Telegraph and a regular contributor to The Spectator and The Tablet. Among his bestselling books are Sacred Mysteries (2007) and A Pilgrim in Spain (2011).


Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is the Telegraph writer Christopher Howse's second book on Spain and if anything it is even better than the last one (A Pilgrim in Spain). It is simply structured in 10 chapters each describing a train journey (with the occasional bus, where a line has been closed) and the stops on the way - Zamora to Zafra, Cuenca to Valencia, Guadix to Chinchilla, and so on. Not the usual tourist routes. As Howse says, it is a book about Spain, not about trains - about its language, food, landscapes, trees, art, religion, history and people. There's a lot about food, actually, and even some recipes ("first, collect your acorns..."). The author stays discreetly in the background - humane and gently ironic - but he makes you see. The section on Spanish ways of being drunk is superb. All in all, a great pleasure.
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Format: Hardcover
Howse is the sort of travelling companion who always notices the things in the corner of the picture that you would otherwise miss, who recommends the nondescript bodega you would otherwise walk past, and who gently fills in the gaps in your knowledge of a city's backstory without making you feel a complete clot. I'm just back from Granada and when I read his chapter on the Alhambra I realised I had spent the day there with my eyes shut. I'll just have to go again - this time with a copy of the wonderful The Train in Spain in my knapsack.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am an avid reader of the author's regular articles in the Daily Telegraph and immensely enjoyed his previous book "A Pilgrim in Spain". He takes us on journeys to Spain which would not occur to most visitors and his observations and information whet one's appetite to visit the places he goes to. This is a wonderful travelogue - his descriptions of his travels and the places he visits are spot on. Enhorabuena, Mr Howse! I can't wait for your next trip to Spain!
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Format: Hardcover
Christopher Howse's writing is in a league of its own - erudite, expansive, generous, witty. I'm an avid reader of all his Telegraph columns, whether the Sacred Mysteries series or his sideways takes on modern mores and language. It's wonderful to see him given the space to stretch his pen. This is an excellent travel companion to places both familiar and unknown.
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Format: Hardcover
Don't bother with this book if you wish to learn about the best place to neck sangria in Barcelona. Howse is inquisitive, erudite, and often very funny. This is not a book about trains, and it's not really a travel book. But it's a brilliant portrait of the parts of Spain few of us ever bother to explore. Superb.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A lot heavier than I expected, probably not the best to read at bedtime unless you are having trouble with insomnia! Well written, but more a document than a book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Interesting, individual and quirky recollections of travels in Spain. It is a great shame that some sections of those wonderful railway lines are now reduced or closed but he does capture the pleasure of journeys in unusual regions whether by train or bus.
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