The Last Train to Zona Verde by Paul Theroux
My Ultimate African Safari

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As I closed "Last Train to Zona Verde," I found myself thinking about V.S. Naipaul. I suspect he will admire the brain-rattling momentum of Mr. Theroux's prose and the Wagnerian fury of his diatribes.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

"Theroux is at his best when he tells [people’s] stories, happy and sad . . . Theroux’s great mission had always been to transport us beyond that reading chair, to challenge himself—and thus, to challenge us." — Boston Globe

A decade ago, Paul Theroux’s best-selling Dark Star Safari chronicled his epic overland voyage from Cairo to Cape Town, providing an insider’s look at modern Africa. Now, with The Last Train to Zona Verde, he returns to discover how both he and Africa have changed in the ensuing years.

Traveling alone, Theroux sets out from Cape Town, going north through South Africa, Namibia, then into Angola, encountering a world increasingly removed from tourists’ itineraries and the hopes of postcolonial independence movements. After covering nearly 2,500 arduous miles, he cuts short his journey, a decision he chronicles with unsparing honesty in a chapter titled “What Am I Doing Here?” Vivid, witty, and beautifully evocative, The Last Train to Zona Verde is a fitting final African adventure from the writer whose gimlet eye and effortless prose have brought the world to generations of readers.

"Everything is under scrutiny in Paul Theroux’s latest travel book—not just the people, landscapes and sociopolitical realities of the countries he visits, but his own motivations for going where he goes . . . His readers can only be grateful." — Seattle Times

“If this book is proof, age has not slowed Theroux or encouraged him to rest on his achievements . . . Gutsy, alert to Africa's struggles, its injustices and history.” — San Francisco Chronicle
 

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 May 7, 2013 by Mariner Books. 370 pages
Genres: Travel, Education & Reference. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The Last Train to Zona Verde
All: 4 | Positive: 4 | Negative: 0

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Robin McKie on Jun 01 2013

The Last Train to Zona Verde is a riveting, chilling read, one that outlines a reality that sometimes seems more like the apocalyptic fiction of writers such as Cormac McCarthy.

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WSJ online

Good
Reviewed by RIAN MALAN on May 10 2013

As I closed "Last Train to Zona Verde," I found myself thinking about V.S. Naipaul. I suspect he will admire the brain-rattling momentum of Mr. Theroux's prose and the Wagnerian fury of his diatribes.

Read Full Review of The Last Train to Zona Verde:... | See more reviews from WSJ online

Kirkus

Excellent
on Mar 16 2013

Reading this enlightening book won’t only open a window into Theroux’s mind, it will also impart a deeper understanding of Africa and travel in general.

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Financial Times

Good
Reviewed by Tom Robbins on May 31 2013

That it ends like this, the great traveller and life-long rail enthusiast unable to muster the will to board the train, apparently infected by the despair all around, is poignant and powerful.

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Karen Russo

Karen Russo 5 Sep 2013

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