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on 14 September 2008
I am a massive fan of the tribe TV series, and it only seemed logical to get the book after watching it, so after receiving it I sat down and read the whole thing through, which was no challenge due to the books fantastic writing and incisive reporting.

The best aspect I found was that the book does not re-tell the series, more so it fills in the background for each tribe, the people behind the series, and the events that were either not captured on camera or deemed not suitable for broadcast - it delves into the less glamorous side of filming, the ailments, the problems, the danger, while keeping the nostalgic story of each tribe intact

A superb read and as stated above, a great partner to the TV series
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VINE VOICEon 13 November 2009
Firstly, Bruce Parry is clearly utterly fearless. He goes off round the world, staying with people who are still living very traditional lifestyles. He doesn't speak the language or understand the customs, but soon he fits in and always ends up making friends. I think testament to him and also to the people he stays with. And each episode of the TV show was fascinating.

Fascinating to see the places where people still live like they have for millennia - jungles, deserts, arctic wildernesses. And how they live. And you got a real sense of that through the TV show. Yes, of course it's a bit artificial - there's a TV crew there, how could it not be? - but I think you did get a sense of how these people live.

In the book the pressures of space deny you the insights in all bar one or two cases. Some are rushed, and the need for a story (instead of just watching the ebb and flow of their lives) turns a few into "turned up, moved in with this guy, did this and he's an amazing friend". Others are given room to breathe, but on the whole this is (at very best) a middling companion to what was a fantastic programme.
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This is a good read, it follows Bruce parry's thoughts, and doings during the making of the tribe programmes, with some interesting thoughts, updates, observances and some humour too!
The criticisms are that it's too short, charting 15 episodes in this amount of pages makes for quick rapid reading and not enough thoughts, ideas, not enough of anything really!

I loved the programmes, the best TV I have seen in years - and I was looking forward to a michael Palin type Himalaya hardback book packed with pages of writing and lots of photographs - but I was let down!

Overall, still a good read and worth reading if you liked the programmes.

UPDATE

IF you liked Tribe, check out Ring of Fire - an indonesian odyssey by Lorne and Lawrence Blair - it blows everything, including Tribe away!
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on 21 December 2010
Lest Mr Bull should feel the burning need to comment on my review too, the end notes reveal that the book was actually ghost-written by Mark McCrum, who turned Parry's extensive notes into something coherent and seems to have consulted with Parry extensively throughout the writing process.

I pre-ordered this book in eager anticipation of the full stories of the tribes in glorious depth and thick detail, my appetite whetted by the excellent television series which I followed on tv from episode one of series one. However, having read it, it becomes abundantly clear that this book is an accessory and accompaniment to the series, not a detailed stand alone from which the series derived. It covers the main events of the episodes, but not in as much detail as the programmes, and omits mention of a couple of occurrences altogether. On the other hand, the book reveals much more about how the programmes were arranged and prepared, what went on behind the scenes, and his own personal opinion about issues which he was unable to provide on the series for the sake of providing an objective view. I do however wish that each chapter had been longer and Parry had explored the difficult issues in greater depth. In its favour, the book is chock full of glossy glorious photos of the exotic peoples and locations. There are also one or two surprises about the people Parry encounters that are most definitely not included in the television show!

You couldn't really classify the book as great literature, but then that's not the purpose of the book. Rather, its purpose is to provide us with a pacy, behind-the-scenes series of anecdotes about the television programme and insights that Parry gained from making the show, complete with lavish photography throughout. A great gift for fans of the series, but won't make much sense if you haven't seen the tv programme.
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on 24 December 2009
Firstly I am facinated by the whole concept of Tribe and loved the TV documentary.
This is really fifteen short stories one per tribe. Which is great for a quick dip in, but I would of prefered more detail as each chapter seems rushed.
It reads like he is writing to a set number of pages and that means each tribe's story is a mere snapshot of the whole picture.

On the positive side he does tell you stuff which you were not aware of from just seeing the show. You appreciate the difficulties in arranging the visits, the occasional friction between Bruce and his tv crew, who are eating 'proper food' to his sometimes near starvation diet of unsavoury food.
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on 13 June 2015
this was a fantastic read and makes you think how other people live without money ETC and how soon there world could be gone for ever
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on 15 June 2014
Enjoyed it very much..... Is what is says on the tin. user friendly and well put together. recommended. happy. gd night
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on 27 October 2009
A very interesting book, it would help to see the program on TV as well.
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on 22 May 2016
good
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