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The Gringo Trail [Paperback]

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Item Number 261661  
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Item description for The Gringo Trail by Mark Mann...

With little more than backpacks and desire for adventure, Mark Mann and two friends set out on an expedition through Ecuador, Bolivia, and Colombia, submerging themselves in Latin culture. Through dense forests, daunting mountains, and pristine beaches, the trio makes its way --- in a drug-induced haze. Soon the drugs become an all-consuming addiction that changes the lives of Mann and his friends forever. This is an engaging travelogue and frank memoir evokes the magical realism of South American literature. "Darkly comic, ultimately shocking, and packed with astute observations." --- Geographical

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Item Specifications...

Pages   280
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.4" Width: 5.5" Height: 0.7"
Weight:   0.65 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 2, 2002
Publisher   Green Candy Press
ISBN  1931160104  
ISBN13  9781931160100  

Availability  0 units.

More About Mark Mann

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > General
2Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Memoirs
3Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Travel
4Books > Subjects > Travel > General > Essays & Travelogues
5Books > Subjects > Travel > Latin America > South America > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Gringo Trail?

Good Book, but not quite Great  Nov 1, 2007
I enjoyed the book, having travelled to South America myself and visited many of the places that he mentions. His political ramblings detract a little from the book. The travelogue portions were excellent.
not for adults  Apr 17, 2007
The gringo trail is a list of bus stops along the Andes spliced between political diatribes lifted from books by Marxist academics. Little in this book is original. The author deplores Latin American cities and exalts the countryside. Both are extraordinary and deserve positive attention. Quito, is a very romantic city with an extraordinary history. The cities of Colombia are each unique and phenomenal but receive little attention from the author. Instead, the author focuses on the religious experience of South American drugs and the poverty of the indigenous community. Mann has little positive to say about the Latino community and culture. Instead, Mann wears the hair shirt of academics who would rather criticize what they see than see the positive. The climax of this book, which is a very real loss, is lost in a last minute explanation of what the author learned about nature. The philosophy of western culture sucks and nature is cool comes off as juvenile and myopic. If your looking for simple answers to Latin American issues according to a recent college graduate mixed with uninspired drama, this book might appeal to you. All in all, this book has very little in the way of insightful observations and is mostly pessimistic. This book strives to be political travel writing but fails at both aspirations.
The Gringo Trail  Sep 7, 2006

I rated it to 5 stars
An interesting read, especially if you love traveling  Aug 8, 2005
While the book did read much like a travel diary at points, it was very insightfull and introspective. It really gave me the feel of extended traveling around South America.
Not something you'll find at Lunpolly  Apr 27, 2005
Those of you who have the vaguest interest in travel and are keen to stray further adrift than the resorts of Costa del Sol will find that this book seriously inflames such ambitions. It would not surprise me if this book were the sole cause of the 'grown up gapers' trend that's apparently sweeping the nation.

From start to finish the sheer scope and breadth of historical content is staggering. Not only is such content woven into the narrative in discrete snippets, but entire sections of chapters are dedicated to revealing the astonishing tale of the conquest that shaped South America centuries ago. It is a common belief that genocide has not been committed on a greater scale in recent times than in Auschwitz at the hands of the Nazi's. This belief is actually a myth as the book tactfully points out.

The book is a vast oasis of vibrant escapism that temporarily blots out the dull realities of your 9 - 5 office job but at the same time is ordinary enough in its approach that it implies that such an experience is within everyone's reach. Fuelled by a style that incorporates dry wit and gentle drug humour, the book gnaws its way through a landscape of polar opposites in which the troublesome trio are frequently hindered by unpredictability and their own quirky incompatibility, which eventually turns to solidity and comradeship.

The theme of freedom runs throughout the book and is strongly embodied within Mark's flamboyant expressionism and Melissa's humble soulfulness. Traits used to contrast against a background of poverty and hidden racism. A truth which the conquest did little to change.

A must read for any budding anthropologist and a should - read for any self respecting literate human.

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