The Happy Isles Of Oceania by Paul Theroux
Paddling the Pacific

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In one of his most exotic and breathtaking journeys, the intrepid traveler Paul Theroux ventures to the South Pacific, exploring fifty-one islands by collapsible kayak. Beginning in New Zealand's rain forests and ultimately coming to shore thousands of miles away in Hawaii, Theroux paddles alone over isolated atolls, through dirty harbors and shark-filled waters, and along treacherous coastlines. This exhilarating tropical epic is full of disarming observations and high adventure.

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 December 8, 2006 by Mariner Books. 532 pages
Genres: Sports & Outdoors, Travel, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

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Even Gauguin's Marquesas are ``dramatic at a distance'' but ``close up--muddy and jungly and priest-ridden.'' Traditional islands are ``riddled with magic, superstition, myths, dangers, rivalries and its old routines.'' Always interesting are Theroux's encounters with archaeologists who have disp...

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Publishers Weekly

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Despite the euphoric title, Oceania as Theroux ( Riding the Iron Rooster ) experienced it was only occasionally a carefree paradise.

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The Independent

Theroux muses about other writers - Melville, Robert Louis Stevenson, Pierre Loti - who have gone to the Pacific and bestowed on some place a 'power of bewitchment that it never really loses'.

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But though Theroux revels in slicing through lonely lagoons and sleeping on isolated beaches, he can't resist exercising his talent for distilling the essence of a place through its human denizens and their quaint, sometimes off-putting ways.

Jul 20 1992 | Read Full Review of The Happy Isles Of Oceania: P...

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