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In Xanadu
     

In Xanadu

4.0 1
by William Dalrymple
 

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William Dalrymple’s award-winning first book: his classic, fiercely intelligent and wonderfully entertaining account of his journey across Marco Polo’s 700-year-old route from Jerusalem to Xanadu, the summer palace of Kubla Khan. 
 
At the age of twenty-two, Dalrymple left his college in Cambridge to travel to the ruins of Kubla

Overview

William Dalrymple’s award-winning first book: his classic, fiercely intelligent and wonderfully entertaining account of his journey across Marco Polo’s 700-year-old route from Jerusalem to Xanadu, the summer palace of Kubla Khan. 
 
At the age of twenty-two, Dalrymple left his college in Cambridge to travel to the ruins of Kubla Khan’s stately pleasure dome in Xanadu. As he and his companions travel across the width of Asia—crossing through Acre, Aleppo, Tabriz, Tashkurgan, and other mysterious and sometimes hellish places—they encounter dusty, forgotten roads, unexpected hospitality, and difficult challenges. Stylish, witty, and knowledgeable about everything from the dreaded order of Assassins to the hidden origins of the Three Magi, this is travel writing at its best.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Superb. . . . Marvelous. . . . Rich with the sights, smells, history and feel of Asia. . . . A classic.” –The Sunday Express

“Splendid. . . . Dalrymple is plainly brilliant, bonkers, or both.” —The Times (London)

“The future of travel writing lies in the hands of gifted writers like Dalrymple.” —The Independent (London)
 
"This is travel writing in the grand tradition, with a true whiff of high adventure. Dalrymple recounts his saga with a fine mixture of humour and erudition, and with the exuberance of youth." —Evening Standard

"Bright, sharp, laconic and outrageous, his is an adventurous account of hippies and mad mullahs, mosques and sacred tombs, dangers and celebrations, Dionysian rituals and rich discoveries. It is full of life and very funny." —Sunday Times
 
“Dalrymple is probably the best travel writer of his generation.” —The Daily Mail
 
“Uncommonly satisfying because of the rare skill with which Dalrymple blends his ingredients: history, danger, humour, architecture, people, hardships, politics.” —London Literary Review
 
“Brilliant.” —The Spectator
 
“Dalrymple is a phenomenon and his journey a remarkable one. . . . A striking achievement.” —Punch
 
“A vivid, engaging, often hilarious account of an amazing 12,000-mile quest.” —The Sunday Express
 
"Outstanding. . . . William Dalrymple is a natural writer. His models are, perhaps, Peter Fleming and Evelyn Waugh rather than more serious travellers, but he's a better scholar than either. Best of all, he has the gift of comedy. . . . In Xanadu marks the arrival of a new star." —Sydney Morning Herald
 
"A fast, furious, funny read. . . . Clearly the stuff bestsellers are made of." —Times of India
 
“A delightful book—erudite, adventurous and amusing [with] an exotic itinerary, charming companions, impossible odds, appalling discomfort and bizarre encounters along the way.” —Piers Paul Reed

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Following in the footsteps of Marco Polo, then-Cambridge University student Dalrymplepk embarks on an overland journey from Jerusalem to Xanadu, through ``twelve thousand miles of extremely dangerous, inhospitable territory.'' Ultimately, there is scarcely any danger, but there is ample history and color. In the ancient city of Acre, Dalrymple refuses narcotics from an Arab boy who, when praised for his excellent English, reveals that he learned it in jail. When Dalrymple reaches Iran with a female companion in tow, he is surprised by how tolerant and Westernized Iranians are, despite the religious revolution. Upon seeing a sign that says, ``Allah Commands the Re-use of Renewable Resources,'' the author observes, ``We had expected anything of the Ayatollah. But hardly that he would turn out to be an enthusiastic ecologist.'' Dalrymple is a delightful guide, capable of waxing poetic upon first sight of the Euphrates River, while maintaining the bright-eyed perceptions of an explorer. When, like Polo, he arrives in Xanadu with a phial of holy oil, it is the culmination of a brave and fantastic journey. The author is bureau chief for the London Sunday Correspondent in New Delhi. First serial to Conde Nast Traveler. (Sept.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307948885
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/18/2012
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
433,165
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.80(d)

Meet the Author

William Dalrymple is the author of seven acclaimed works of history and travel, including City of Djinns, which won the Young British Writer of the Year Prize and the Thomas Cook Travel Book award; the bestselling From the Holy Mountain; White Mughals, which won Britain's most prestigious history prize, the Wolfson; and The Last Mughal, which won the Duff Cooper Prize for History and Biography. He divides his time between New Delhi and London, and is a contributor to The New York Review of Books, The New Yorker, and The Guardian.
 
www.williamdalrymple.uk.com

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In Xanadu 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago