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4.2 out of 5 stars
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4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 3 September 2010
Highly recommended. Dom travels beyond the radius of Ryan Air's reach and gives us a literary photo album of his exploits travelling through the atmospheric North Korea (to the extent possible for a foreigner), Cambodia, Lebanon, Iran and USA. Though laugh out loud funny in parts, I would say the books main attraction was its interesting ability, through scary and funny travel anecdotes, to give the reader the feeling of what it is like to be there, without the actual travel. I like anything that overcomes the media stereotype for a particular travel location (though his trip to North Korea actually reinforced my media derived image).

Iran's always been on my "to do" list, now its near the top.
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This review is for the AUDIO BOOK version of The Dark Tourist - unfortunately Amazon have lumped the audio reviews in with the book reviews and there is no place to review them separately.

This is one of the funniest audio books I have listened to in ages. It is also one of the most addictive I've purchased to date, I listened to all 7 hours in just two afternoons - something I have never done with an audio book before.

Dom Joly in one of his many occupations works as a travel writer and as a consequence he gets to travel to many interesting and fascinating places around the world. However, not content with the standard tourist attractions, Mr Joly decides that it might be interesting to visit some rather obscure destinations - would you have ever considered skiing in Iran?

He dedicates one chapter to each destination and narrates his journey, or at least the memorable parts - of which there are many - with his own special brand of very dry humour. He manages to bring places that most of us will never get the chance to go to (nor probably wish to) in vivid detail.

He also manages to pull off an astounding range of authentic sounding accents when he plays the part of one of the locals. I defy anyone not to laugh at his account of his interview with an American security agent after landing at the airport. I was laughing constantly as he played the part of the disbelieving guard during the 'interview'

His vivid description of his escape whilst being chased around the JFK museum was enough to make my eyes water. He is probably on the list of 'America's most wanted' after his heinous felony of taking an unauthorised photograph out of a window.

If you enjoy audio books and you would like to find out a little more about the darker side of tourism this is definitely one to think about buying. Each chapter lasts approximately 1 hour and once you start a new chapter you will want to listen right to the end.

Highly recommended.
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on 6 September 2010
I picked this up, not knowing what to expect. I was a big Trigger Happy Tv fan but didn't know if this would be to my taste. I LOVED IT. The book is well written- very funny and informative without being preachy. Dom travels the world going to some curious destinations and getting into all sorts of scrapes. He skis in Iran and gets drunk on "Pizza" (Iranian moonshine). He goes on a road trip across the USA visiting the scenes of various assassinations. He takes a weekend break in Chernobyl and gets stuck in a lift. He goes to Cambodia and tries to buy Pol Pot;s shoes before ending up in a war crimes trial. In North Korea he thinks he;s been targeted by the secret service as his testicle swells up to a huge size. Finally in Lebanon he tries to get to the truth about being at school with Bin Laden and plays paintball with Hezbollah

BRILLIANT BOOK- BUY THIS....
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on 19 March 2016
This book gave me quite a few laugh out loud moments, a few sniggers and alot of chuckles. I particularly liked the chapter on North korea, The Great Leader and The Glorious General. Dom Joly is a dark tourist here, travelling to places we are supposedly in fear of going to. Although, in the world we live in today a trip to North Korea, Cambodia or Chernobyl will be like going to Disneyland compared to some countries thst are truly no go areas now.
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on 16 September 2010
There's not many books i'd give 5 stars to.. but this piece of reading has it all! I a a big Dom Joly fan, I think his comedy is great and Trigger Happy TV still gets me in fits of giggles after watching it for the 100th time. I'm not a travel book fan, but seeing a promotion in the newpaper for this I thought I'd give it a go.

I had no great knowledge of any of the countries in question (apart from America) and so this book really was enlightening, especially for me. He explains the history of the places he visits beforehand, so even if you don't really know anything, you will come out of reading this book with some knowledge. The book is of course hilarious, but he mixes it with the right mixture of humour, honesty and history.

I'd recommend this to everyone. 5*s!
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on 4 January 2011
I couldn't put this book down. Very funny, and occasionally surprisingly moving, it takes you on a whirlwind tour of some of the world's darkest political regimes, war zones, disasters and assassination sites. This isn't a serious travel guide, or in-depth current affairs analysis, but is hugely entertaining and gives a real sense of each of the places he visits. Thoroughly recommended.
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on 24 September 2010
Bought this book after having attended one of Mr Joly's talks at Nottingham - then saw him again at Birmingham and he remembered - I think he thought I might be stalking him, sorry Dom, the Walsall scarf did not help. Read it in just over a day and a morning. Enjoyed the chapters on Iran and North Korea, but felt he could have gone to better places such as Yemen, Angola, Myanmar and the like for the other sections. Easy on the eye to read and having read many books on Korea and travelled to Iran and some of the places he had seen they did not expose anything else I did not already know. However, I may find myself getting another of his books one of these days as he did inject some humour and have some funny stories to tell.
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on 5 December 2010
Received this book on a Monday and must have finished it by the weekend which is very quick for me especially when I try to read slower to make them last longer. The places visited in this book are described in an excellent and funny way but my only little problem is that the book is too short and it would have been nice to include a few more places bringing the page count to a more worthwhile 350 pages. Places included are: Iran, USA, Cambodia, Ukraine, North Korea and Lebanon.
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on 27 June 2013
Well written and entertaining. Joly visits some great locations and has some fun interactions, but ultimately I was hoping for a little more excitement. He essentially goes to potentially dangerous locations and finds no danger. Still an enjoyable read and certainly lifts some of the fog surrounding those locations that the average tourist might not be too keen to visit.
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on 16 January 2012
I read this book over a Christmas holiday. I admit to being a fan of Dom Joly's type of comedy, and it does come out in the book, a kind of dry and depreciating humour, poking fun at himself in situations, and subtly at others. His description of his arrival in the US as a Lebanon born UK passport holder, recently having visited Iran is particularly good, especially if you've experienced the joys of the welcome that US immigration generally provides. I also was in stitches at the early part of his visit to Kiev (on the way to Chernobyl). I would highly recommend the book for an outlook of places you may never visit, but also from the sheer humour used throughout.
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