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Mission Mongolia: Two Men, One Van, No Turning Back Paperback – 5 Jul 2010

4.5 out of 5 stars 55 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Summersdale; 1st Edition edition (5 July 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849530599
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849530590
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 301,351 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

`Nicely humorous' --The Bookseller, 26th March 2010

Clear, unpretentious writing... a pacy and clear narrative that gives you a taste of the reality of epic drives.
Travelmag, 14th September 2010


Humorous, descriptive, thought provoking and above all, enjoyable. Mission Mongolia comes highly recommeded.
Adventurebimbling, 21st July 2010


The concept is enthralling. The fact that they battled corrupt border officials, dangerously eroded roads and the elements, is incredible.
St Christopher's Inns, September 2010

Treanor neatly weaves in history, geography and ecology without letting the pace drop.
Luxique Travel, 4th August 2010

About the Author

David Treanor was a BBC journalist for more than 25 years, editing news bulletins for the Today programme and Radio 4’s Six O’clock News. The journey was made in support of the charity Save the Children.


Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an easily read and enjoyable account of two middle aged mens' adventure in crossing Europe, Ukraine, Russia, and Kasaksthan, on their way to delivering a van to Mongolia for charity.
They had no mechanical knowledge, no Russian language skills, and little back up, and yet with oodles of optimism and not a little perseverance they made the journey. The writing is light hearted, maybe sometimes trying a little too hard to be funny, but always enjoyable.
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Format: Paperback
I generally enjoy travel books, but I often stick to reading about places I've been or am planning on visiting at some point, as I find this more interesting. Needless to say, Kazakhstan and Mongolia are not high on my list of places to visit, so if I'd been browsing, I may never have chosen this book.
However, a friend recommended it to me, and I found it a delightful read. It's interesting, witty, and informative and the descriptions of the places they visit and people they meet are sympathetic and never condescending.
Of course, given their level of mechanical knowledge, Russian, and camping, you have to question the sanity level of David and Geoff for undertaking the trip in the first place, but I'm very glad they did, and that this book was the result - a must read for any fan of travel writing.
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Format: Paperback
This book is brilliant, absolutely hillarious!

Forget Bear Grylls. Forget Ray Mears. This is the story of what would happen if you and your best friend decided to trek half way across the world with little more than a clapped-out Anglia Water van, a few maps that are akin to works of fiction and more toilet rolls than you know what to do with.

From start to finish, this book is both funny, intriguing and thoroughly exciting to read. From the snowy lanes of a wintry Britain to the baking desolation of the Gobi desert and beyond, what these two men managed to achieve through sheer force of will and cheery determination is fantastic.

Brilliantly written, this book manages to side-step the usual travel-guide dogma you'd expect when examining the histories of the towns and villages which our travellers pass through, instead focussing on the personal effect that the events had on the many and varied people whom they meet.

If nothing else, this book is worth reading for the sheer entertainment value of every time the author attempts to 'go native' and order dinner in the language of whichever restaurant he's in... Priceless!

I guarantee that by the time you've read this book, you'll be sticking a pin in a map and looking through the window at the Ford Fiesta on your drive, just wondering...
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Format: Paperback
Bought this book as I have an endearing interest in Mongolia - been wanting to go there for years.Having said that it is not until the end chapters that you actually read about Mongolia. The rest is a travelogue as our intrepid duo trek through Europe via Germany and entering Russia, then Kazakhstan. I would have liked to have read a bit more about some of the places they visited, Colditz for one, and Stalingrad if they had visited. However, I did find it absorbing, especially their troubles at each border, and the constant run in with traffic cops wanting the old bribes! I was with them when they hoped the van would make it, they even patched it up a couple of times with make shift spares from the back. Their descriptions of some of the roads leads me to think I shall never moan about the state of our roads. Look out for the slight twist at the end involving the van - all is not how it was supposed to work out!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very enjoyable read and insight into a lot of places (and the beer they sell) - Mongolia is on my list to visit
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
At an early stage of this book the author and his companion, Geoff, get lost. They are in Lincolnshire. It is a suitably comic start to a story that will see them getting lost many, many times - eventually, in the Gobi Desert. As a post-retirement adventure, they have committed themselves to driving a van from England to Mongolia and this delightful book is the story of the trip. It takes them through Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Siberia and Mongolia itself. But do not expect deep insights into the culture of these places. Instead, we get a gently self-mocking account of two Englishmen abroad, muddling through as best they can. Much of the joy of reading it comes from the contrasting characters of the two men. The author is eternally optimistic and somewhat shambolic. Geoff is warier and more practical. One thing they have in common is an awe-inspiring ability to keep themselves supplied with beer in the most inhospitable of environments. It is written with a skilfully light touch; we get to know the two friends gradually, as their journey becomes more fraught. And we feel all the dangers and discomforts with them: the potholed roads, awful hotels and corrupt officials are all vividly described. Anyone who has ever got lost in a strange country will enjoy this: highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I loved this book, what an adventure, a glimpse at a world hidden from the world; crazy russians and mind boggling events. An easy and entertaining read, beautifully written and will make you smile.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Thoroughly enjoyed this journey to Mongolia. It was humorous and informative and it made a lovely bed-time read, well an anytime read really, but just extra nice to go to sleep on!
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