This is a really excellent account of what it feels like to prepare, undertake and complete a particular type of journey. From my own bicycle travels, I can relate to a lot of the emotions, whether they are high or low, and the thought processes that emerge. I would recommend the book for anyone that wants to know a little more about the author's lust for travel and what it means to undertake journeys.
You must read everything by this chap. He writes with great honesty as well as superb description. This book is refreshingly original in the way he describes his adventures, following themes rather than a chronology.
I've read countless adventure and travel books and the majority fail to address the psychology of why we love to travel - a genuinely interesting subject matter. This book manages to explore our constant desire for travel in a clear and tangible way by following a simple walk across India.
The journey itself is not as spectacular or 'epic' in comparison to his other adventures, yet it manages to perfectly capture the essence of an adventure. He really emphasizes key elements such as the 'get up and go' factor and I love it.
Simple chapter headings, 'sunrise, dawn, challenge, alone' etc will keep the reader entranced and enthralled in this journey. As with all of Alastair Humphrey's books they are beautifully written, a rarity for this genre, it really does make such a difference to read, for the simple element of expression.
If you are a 'traveller' (I use that expression reluctantly), or a more noble adventurer, then this is the book for you. I myself have done cycle touring and I could now comfortably settle down to life of cups of tea and heated car seats, this book reignites the spark in me to get back on the open road, and when I do, the first thing I do will be to pack this book.
I'm one of those people who devour adventure books because vicariously I can be out there experiencing it too. In this book Alastair takes us on an internal journey as much as describing parts of his walk across India. It resonated with me deeply in parts, the need to be someone extraordinary, the desire to shed all physical possessions and just exist simply. I identify with the need to keep moving - I move every few years but I'm not as brave as Alastair. I also fell in love with India when I travelled there. It's one of those places I felt at home in so it was great to revisit some of those impressions through the eyes of such a seasoned traveller.
I find myself strangely jealous of the freedom to sleep under the stars, to walk towards the setting sun, to take each day anew. If you sometimes feel this way, you'll love this book. Highly recommended.
This book is incredible. I have read Alistair’s book about micro-adventures and enjoyed it so much I thought I would try another.
Alistair’s book enthralled me from the start. It is not a detailed narrative of the journey, it doesn’t contain tales of derring-do or high drama. Instead Alistair chose to write about the people he meets, his experiences, the food he eats, his daily routine, where he sleeps and the things he sees though an account of a single day.
He has an amazing way with words, his prose is so eloquent, it’s easy to see in one’s mind’s eye what he is describing, which are the people and parts of India that I was certainly unfamiliar with.
Alistair also reflects on the reasons behind himself and others deciding to embark on difficult journeys. I found it fascinating learning about what makes adventurers and what it is about them that is so different from us ordinary folk.
Also this has got to be one of the most beautiful, poetic books I have ever read. I loved the quotations at the beginning of each chapter, they are both thought provoking and awesome in their simplicity.
I absolutely loved the last sentence, it was brilliant and left me with a lump in my throat, a tear in my eye and a huge grin.
Postscript ======= Having enjoyed this book so much I have now read Moods of Future Joys and have nearly finish its sequel “Thunder and Sunshine” and would recommend them too.