In Search of Landfall

Based on Homer’s ODYSSEY and using memoir as a vehicle, IN SEARCH OF LANDFALL is an almost mythical meditation on childhood, the loss of innocence, love and the passing of time. It is also a fascinating portrait of two very different worlds; the author’s childhood in 1950’s Edinburgh and his time there at university as a radical student in the late 60’s, and his life in the exhilarating counterculture of Amsterdam in the 70’s and 80’s. As he travels through life and the remotest parts of the globe, he describes both his inner and outer journeys and the extraordinary characters he encounters along the way, including Indira Gandhi, Robin Cook and Jorge Luis Borges.

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Reports From Beyond

This book gives a glimpse into the author’s colourful and adventurous life and beautifully describes his unusual journeys to remote and fascinating cultures. His reports are very varied. Some are very dramatic, such as when he falls through the ice in Lake Baikal in Siberia, is attacked by a pack of dogs in Vanuatu in the Pacific, or is trapped on top of a derailed train in the Congolese jungle. Others are more lyrical, for example when he travels up the Amazon River, climbs sacred Mount Emei in western China, or sails down the Niger River to Timbuktu in Mali. He paints captivating pictures of the landscapes and the people he encounters, while always placing them in their cultural and historical context. As a result, he lures the reader into a sensory – but always realistic – world of foreign sights, sounds and smells. His journeys reflect his desire, both in his life and his travels, to take risks, explore his limits, and go ‘beyond’.

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Edinburgh Book Festival 2014