Ghost Train to the Eastern Star by Paul Theroux
On the Tracks of the Great Railway Bazaar

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Synopsis

Half a lifetime ago, Paul Theroux virtually invented the modern travel narrative by recounting his grand tour by train through Asia. In the three decades since, the world he recorded in that book has undergone phenomenal change.The Soviet Union has collapsed and China has risen; India booms while Burma smothers under dictatorship; Vietnam flourishes in the aftermath of the havoc America was unleashing on it the last time he passed through.

In Ghost Train to the Eastern Star, Theroux re-creates that earlier journey. His odyssey takes him from eastern Europe, still hung-over from communism, through tense but thriving Turkey into the Caucasus, where Georgia limps back toward feudalism while its neighbor Azerbaijan revels in oil-fueled capitalism.Theroux is firsthand witness to it all, encountering adventures only he could have: from the literary (sparring with the incisive Nobel laureate Orhan Pamuk) to the dissolute (surviving a week-long bender on the Trans-Siberian Railroad).Wherever he goes, his omnivorous curiosity and unerring eye for detail never fail to inspire, enlighten, inform, and entertain.

 

About Paul Theroux

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PAUL THEROUX is the author of many highly acclaimed books. His novels include The Lower River and The Mosquito Coast, and his renowned travel books include Ghost Train to the Eastern Star and Dark Star Safari. He lives in Hawaii and on Cape Cod.
 
Published August 6, 2009 by Mariner Books. 511 pages
Genres: Travel, Professional & Technical, Biographies & Memoirs, History, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Ghost Train to the Eastern Star

Kirkus Reviews

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Travel writer and novelist Theroux (The Elephanta Suite, 2007, etc.) offers an elegiac retracing of roads and railroads taken across the vastness of Eurasia.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

Publishers Weekly

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Acclaimed travel writer and novelist Theroux hasn’t lost his affection for trains, but his view of the scenery outside has darkened in his latest odyssey. Reprising the itinerary of his 1973

May 05 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

The New York Times

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“It was a homecoming I had not expected,” Mr. Theroux writes, “like a visit to generous grateful relatives I had not seen in decades.” But ingrates, it turns out, also make good copy: In Singapore — a money-grubbing place insufficiently appreciative of the literary attention lavished on it by “J...

Aug 21 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

The Guardian

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Ghost Train to the Eastern Star : On the Tracks of the Great Railway Bazaar by Paul Theroux Find this on the Guardian bookshop Search the Guardian bookshop ...

Jun 27 2009 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

The Guardian

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Like everything Theroux writes (to date 27 works of fiction and 15 of non-fiction), Ghost Train is agreeably spiced with literary references, mostly from the usual crew - Yeats, Conrad, Larkin - though he takes trouble to involve lesser-known indigenous writers, too.

Sep 13 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

The Guardian

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The travel writing is 'the nearest I will come to autobiography', says Paul Theroux.

Sep 21 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

The Telegraph

Thirty-three years on from The Great Railway Bazaar, Paul Theroux is back on the train.

Sep 12 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

The Telegraph

In September 1973, Paul Theroux, then aged 32, set off from London's Victoria station to travel by train across Europe and Asia to Japan and back again.

Sep 12 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

Christian Science Monitor

“The decision to return to any early scene in your life is dangerous but irresistible, not as a search for lost time but for the grotesquerie of what happened since.”

Aug 20 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

The Bookbag

Summary: Theroux sets out to retrace a journey undertaken in 1973, travelling the railways of Europe, the Indian subcontinent and wider Asia, in search of the changes wrought in the intervening time: in places and in himself.

Oct 24 2009 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

San Francisco Chronicle

The book ushered in one of the periodic golden revivals of travel writing - Jonathan Raban, Bruce Chatwin, Bill Barich, William Least Heat-Moon, for instance - and Theroux had more train trips up his sleeve.

Aug 06 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

Review (Barnes & Noble)

The photo on the jacket of The Great Railway Bazaar: By Train Through Asia, Paul Theroux's 1975 account of a 28,000-mile odyssey through Eastern Europe, the Far East, Indonesia, India, and the Middle East, is a perfect catalog of antediluvian fashion.

Aug 20 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

PopMatters

“Only the old can really see how gracelessly the world is aging and all that we have lost,” Theroux writes.

Sep 05 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

Bookmarks Magazine

Best-selling author Paul Theroux revolutionized travel literature with the publication of The Great Railway Bazaar (1975), and he has long been praised for his realistic reporting and clear-eyed assessments of the exotic locales he visits.

Aug 10 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

Spectator Book Club

When Paul Theroux set off from Victoria Station in 1973 his plan was to cross Europe and Asia, taking as many trains as he needed to get him to Tokyo, returning on the Trans-Siberian Express.

Sep 13 2008 | Read Full Review of Ghost Train to the Eastern St...

Reader Rating for Ghost Train to the Eastern Star
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