Lost on Planet China by J. Maarten Troost
The Strange and True Story of One Man's Attempt to Understand the World's Most Mystifying Nation or How He Became Comfortable Eating Live Squid

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Synopsis

The bestselling author of The Sex Lives of Cannibals returns with a sharply observed, hilarious account of his adventures in China—a complex, fascinating country with enough dangers and delicacies to keep him, and readers, endlessly entertained.

Maarten Troost has charmed legions of readers with his laugh-out-loud tales of wandering the remote islands of the South Pacific. When the travel bug hit again, he decided to go big-time, taking on the world’s most populous and intriguing nation. In Lost on Planet China, Troost escorts readers on a rollicking journey through the new beating heart of the modern world, from the megalopolises of Beijing and Shanghai to the Gobi Desert and the hinterlands of Tibet.

Lost on Planet China
finds Troost dodging deadly drivers in Shanghai; eating Yak in Tibet; deciphering restaurant menus (offering local favorites such as Cattle Penis with Garlic); visiting with Chairman Mao (still dead, very orange); and hiking (with 80,000 other people) up Tai Shan, China’s most revered mountain. But in addition to his trademark gonzo adventures, the book also delivers a telling look at a vast and complex country on the brink of transformation that will soon shape the way we all work, live, and think. As Troost shows, while we may be familiar with Yao Ming or dim sum or the cheap, plastic products that line the shelves of every store, the real China remains a world—indeed, a planet--unto itself.

Maarten Troost brings China to life as you’ve never seen it before, and his insightful, rip-roaringly funny narrative proves that once again he is one of the most entertaining and insightful armchair travel companions around.
 

About J. Maarten Troost

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J. Maarten Troost was a consultant for the World Bank and has lived in the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Canada, Kiribati, Fiji, and Vanuatu, among other exotic locations before settling down near Washington, D.C.
 
Published July 8, 2008 by Broadway Books. 402 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Humor & Entertainment, Travel, History, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Lost on Planet China

Kirkus Reviews

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“It is remarkable,” he writes, “how quickly a country like China can reduce a foreigner—this foreigner, in any case—to a state of childlike powerlessness.” As Troost travels through Beijing, Shanghai, Qingdao, Guangzhou and a half dozen other teeming cities, he notices the pervasive remnants of t...

Jun 01 2008 | Read Full Review of Lost on Planet China: The Str...

Publishers Weekly

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Troost (The Sex Lives of Cannibals) is ruthless in his portrayal of China as terribly polluted (""In no way was I ready for the swirling filth that constitutes air in Beijing""), a nation of knockoffs and rip-offs, and cruelly authoritarian in its treatment of Tibet.

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Examiner

For those who are truly interested in China’s economic impact, there are more scholarly books, but Lost on Planet China would give anyone at least one perspective of what you might expect traveling there as a tourist.

Feb 21 2011 | Read Full Review of Lost on Planet China: The Str...

The American Book Center Blog

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Dec 05 2009 | Read Full Review of Lost on Planet China: The Str...

Tucson Citizen

Is there another toilet option?” and “Are you sure that’s chicken?” This is a highly entertaining book filled with exotic locales, frightening typhoons, camels, mobsters, bizarre foods (think processed ox stomach) and a dishy translator who may or may not be a “take-out girl.” Troost’s sharp ey...

Aug 21 2008 | Read Full Review of Lost on Planet China: The Str...

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