Top critical review
5 people found this helpful
Pretty good holiday read, regardless of whether you believe every word or not.
on 29 February 2016
I thought it was ok actually. I'm an ex-backpacker so I bought it as a holiday read and it was quite good, brought back some good memories and suspect the era this book is based on isn't long after when I was in this area. To criticise this book for potentially embellished is a bit harsh, if you had doubts about this then you shouldn't have bought it, I doubt some of it is true either, but you have to let yourself go and go with it. I thought there were a couple of holes in it, like someone else pointed out, that if one of the friends had died you'd have made a lot more attempt, or at least documented that, you tried to get help and search after him instead of just getting a job on a farm straight away. Maybe John should re-write this bit. Apart from that I thought it was quite good. I'm a travel snob so I thought the route was a bit predictable and uninteresting but the story itself is quite exciting, even if it does seem to burn out the last few chapters. Would have been good with an update right at the end maybe as to what the two remaining friends are doing these days, as I presume this happened at least 15 years ago. I see some reviewers were giving John a hard time for some of his behaviour as a backpacker, but I think if you buy a book called The Backpacker you have to accept there could be some bad behaviour going to happen. It's like buying a book called The Student then being shocked when someone got drunk! Bottom line, regardless of whether its all true or not, as a holiday read it's a pretty good little tale, especially if you are or were a backpacker yourself.