What To Look Out For When You Re Buying Travel Books

Surely everyone loves a​ good travel book but sometimes they can be disappointing,​ more often,​ say,​ than a​ recipe or​ handcraft book. There are ways to​ avoid missing the​ bus.

Before forking out dollars for a​ travel book,​ ask yourself the​ following: am I in​ love with the​ idea of​ this book or​ the​ book itself? Take for example a​ book entitled "Gorgeous Morocco". Are you​ in​ love with the​ idea of​ glorious Morocco or​ the​ book you​ are holding in​ your hand? to​ establish this you​ need to​ ask: what is​ the​ purpose of​ buying this book?

If you​ are planning a​ trip to​ Morocco and it's nuts-and-bolts information you​ are seeking,​ then it​ is​ no good buying the​ incoherent ramblings of​ a​ traveling school teacher in​ the​ 1950's. It's also no good being attracted by the​ photographs,​ because photos do lie and hardly constitute hard information. if​ you​ are simply keen on​ reading and learning about Morocco in​ general,​ then a​ book written from any angle will do,​ unless it​ is​ something completely off-beam,​ like a​ book written in​ the​ 1920's by a​ missionary,​ called "How I Converted Four Heathens in​ Morocco".

If it's useful travel information you​ are after,​ ask yourself: is​ this book up to​ date and properly researched? if​ you​ are holding a​ book called "Mainland Greece",​ for instance,​ do a​ quick test. Think of​ a​ town in​ mainland Greece you​ know,​ such as​ Thrace,​ and see how quickly it​ takes to​ locate the​ section on​ Thrace and how useful the​ information is​ concerning accommodation,​ transport,​ restaurants,​ attractions,​ etc.

Easy-to-navigate handbooks with great indexes are just the​ ticket. They should be compact,​ so you​ can fit them in​ your hand luggage and cheap enough that if​ you​ lose them you​ don't mind. the​ rule of​ thumb is​ that a​ few illustrative photographs are good – they show serious intent on​ the​ part of​ author and publisher to​ inform you​ – but too many photographs diminish the​ quality and quantity of​ the​ usable information. There should be concise historical nuggets and handy insider travel tips. There should also be complementary online resources listed for up-to-the-minute information.

If it's not practical information you​ are after,​ but you​ want to​ feed your travel dreams and inform yourselves about countries through the​ ages then ask: who wrote this book? There has been a​ "colonization" of​ countries through travel writing. I mean that certain writers in​ English writing have become inextricably linked with writings about certain countries. They are quite simply the​ last word on​ the​ subject.

Lawrence Durrell and Henry Miller colonized Greece. Lawrence of​ Arabia colonized Arabia,​ Robert Lacey colonized Saudi Arabia. William Dalrymple colonized Byzantium and Delhi. the​ Durrells colonized Corfu. Bill Bryson colonized Australia and rural America. Lisa St. Aubin de Terán colonized South America and Umbria. Peter Mayle colonized Provence,​ And so on. the​ quality of​ travel writer you​ want when you​ are reading for dreaming and escapism is​ completely different from the​ quality of​ writer you​ seek when it's current useful data you​ are after.

If you​ are after visuals and looking through a​ pictorial travel book,​ then you​ should ask:

how much has the​ photographer introduced of​ his/her own vision into the​ book? There is​ nothing that puts a​ traveler's teeth on​ edge more than paging through a​ book on​ Rome and seeing the​ same old perspectives of​ the​ Coliseum and the​ Spanish Steps. if​ the​ photographer and the​ person who wrote the​ text (there will always be some text in​ a​ pictorial travel book) has not introduced some personal theme or​ perspective then you​ don't really have a​ travel book worthy of​ the​ name.

Excellent examples are the​ photographic scrapbooks of​ Peter Beard who resided in​ East Africa and was obsessed with elephants. you​ won't find one photo of​ the​ Serengeti Plain or​ Kilimanjaro in​ any of​ his books,​ which is​ why he such a​ much-collected author and photographer and why you​ will struggle to​ find a​ copy of​ these long out-of-print masterpieces.
What To Look Out For When You Re Buying Travel Books What To Look Out For When You Re Buying Travel Books Reviewed by Henda Yesti on September 13, 2018 Rating: 5

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