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1 Burnside Travel Writing- Asia

Unexpected Light Travels in Afghanistan

by

Unexpected Light Travels in Afghanistan Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Part historical evocation, part travelogue, and part personal quest, An Unexpected Light is the account of Elliot's journey through Afghanistan, a country considered off-limits to travelers for twenty years. Aware of the risks involved, but determined to explore what he could of the Afghan people and culture, Elliot leaves the relative security of Kabul. He travels by foot and on horseback, and hitches rides on trucks that eventually lead him into the snowbound mountains of the North toward Uzbekistan, the former battlefields of the Soviet army's "hidden war." Here the Afghan landscape kindles a recollection of the author's life ten years earlier, when he fought with the anti-Soviet mujaheddin resistance during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.

Weaving different Afghan times and visits with revealing insights on matters ranging from antipersonnel mines to Sufism, Elliot has created a narrative mosaic of startling prose that captures perfectly the powerful allure of a seldom-glimpsed world. An Unexpected Light is a remarkable, poignant book about Afghanistan and a heartfelt reflection on the experience of travel itself.

Review:

"This extraordinary debut is an account of Elliot's two visits to Afghanistan....The result is some of the finest travel writing in recent years. With its luminous descriptions of the people, the landscape (even when pockmarked by landmines), and Sufism, this book has all the hallmarks of a classic, and it puts Elliot in the same league as Robert Byron and Bruce Chatwin." Library Journal

Review:

"[A] lyrical, unrestrained, and enthralling account of a journey into Afghanistan....I loved this book." Daily Telegraph (London)

Review:

"A work of substance and style, witty and moving by turns, never less than wholly passionate....What raises the book to the level of a classic is its intensely personal meditation on the magic of unplanned adventure, of the pain and pleasure of pushing into the unknown." The Times (London)

Review:

"[An Unexpected Light] will make frequent travelers to the country aware of how jaded they have become and give those who have never been there a wonderful sense of what it is like. And that, after all, is what a travel book is meant to do." The Observer

Review:

"Jason Elliot is an entertaining companion in a heartbreaking land, and his stylish prose is laced with intelligent analysis of a culture startlingly remote from our own." The Spectator

Review:

"I am sure this book will soon be among the classics of travel." Doris Lessing

Review:

"Humorous, honest and wry, a devotee of Afghanistan's culture, Elliot strives to debunk the myth of 'the inscrutability of the East' and paint, in careful detail, a portrait of a deeply spiritual people. For a first-time author, his literary talents are exceptional. His sonorous prose moves forward with the purposeful grace of a river; it reads like a text unearthed from an ancient land." Publishers Weekly

Synopsis:

With a New Afterword by the Author

Part travelogue, part historical evocation, part personal quest, and part reflection on the joys and perils of passage, this acclaimed synthesis of description and insight remains as relevant today as when it first appeared. Jason Elliot's An Unexpected Light is a remarkable, poignant book about Afghanistan and a heartfelt reflection on the experience of travel itself.

About the Author

Jason Elliot lives in London. This is his first book.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780312274597
Subtitle:
Travels in Afghanistan
Author:
Elliot, Jason
Publisher:
Picador
Location:
New York, N.Y.
Subject:
Description and travel
Subject:
Afghanistan
Subject:
Asia - General
Subject:
Asia - Central
Subject:
Essays & Travelogues
Subject:
Middle East
Subject:
Middle East - General
Edition Number:
1st Picador USA ed.
Edition Description:
Picador USA
Series Volume:
87-12
Publication Date:
20110802
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Includes 2 maps
Pages:
512
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Asia » Afghanistan
Travel » Travel Writing » Asia

Unexpected Light Travels in Afghanistan Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.95 In Stock
Product details 512 pages MACMILLAN PUBLISHING SERVICES - English 9780312274597 Reviews:
"Review" by , "This extraordinary debut is an account of Elliot's two visits to Afghanistan....The result is some of the finest travel writing in recent years. With its luminous descriptions of the people, the landscape (even when pockmarked by landmines), and Sufism, this book has all the hallmarks of a classic, and it puts Elliot in the same league as Robert Byron and Bruce Chatwin."
"Review" by , "[A] lyrical, unrestrained, and enthralling account of a journey into Afghanistan....I loved this book."
"Review" by , "A work of substance and style, witty and moving by turns, never less than wholly passionate....What raises the book to the level of a classic is its intensely personal meditation on the magic of unplanned adventure, of the pain and pleasure of pushing into the unknown."
"Review" by , "[An Unexpected Light] will make frequent travelers to the country aware of how jaded they have become and give those who have never been there a wonderful sense of what it is like. And that, after all, is what a travel book is meant to do."
"Review" by , "Jason Elliot is an entertaining companion in a heartbreaking land, and his stylish prose is laced with intelligent analysis of a culture startlingly remote from our own."
"Review" by , "I am sure this book will soon be among the classics of travel."
"Review" by , "Humorous, honest and wry, a devotee of Afghanistan's culture, Elliot strives to debunk the myth of 'the inscrutability of the East' and paint, in careful detail, a portrait of a deeply spiritual people. For a first-time author, his literary talents are exceptional. His sonorous prose moves forward with the purposeful grace of a river; it reads like a text unearthed from an ancient land."
"Synopsis" by ,

With a New Afterword by the Author

Part travelogue, part historical evocation, part personal quest, and part reflection on the joys and perils of passage, this acclaimed synthesis of description and insight remains as relevant today as when it first appeared. Jason Elliot's An Unexpected Light is a remarkable, poignant book about Afghanistan and a heartfelt reflection on the experience of travel itself.

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