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  1. #1
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    Nov 2005
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    Default Coasting by Jonathan Raban

    Originally produced in 1986, but reading it for the first time. 4 year journey round the UK but nothing like a travelogue. Bit of social commentary, bit of autobiography a bit of diatribe and a lot else besides Very opinionated, I dont agree with it all, but very well written and additionally interesting to read it throught the lens of 25 years.
    WAFI formerly known as Second Affaire

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    3,167

    Thumbs up

    If you liked that try 'Passage to Juneau'. Brilliant book. One of my favourites of all time. More recent, more personal, complex and fascinating. On the face of it it's about sailing from Seattle to Alaska, but that's just the bones on which a lot of diverse stories and ideas are woven together (if you'll excused the mixed metaphor!).

    I first came across it while I was Christmas shopping some years back. I bought it for myself. By next mroning I'd finished it, and gone back to the shop to buy their remaining 5 copies for various friends. Have re-read it seveeral times, and each time just seems richer.
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  3. #3

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    +1 for both books. Also 'Old Glory', a trip down the Mississippi. Great writing.

  4. #4
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    Jun 2007
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    Read 'Passage to Juneau' recently and found it heavy going - I'll not be rushing to R shelves of the library.
    If you're not confused, you're probably misinformed

  5. #5
    Babylon's Avatar
    Babylon is offline Registered User
    Location : Oxfordshire / Solent
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobbieW View Post
    Read 'Passage to Juneau' recently and found it heavy going - I'll not be rushing to R shelves of the library.
    That's because its really about his divorce! And the indigenous Indians, and fish, and lots else besides.

    Back to 'Coasting'... my favourite bit is when the sound of his engine running reminds him of the then current Sun headline: Up Your Junta, Up Your Junta, UpYourJunta, UpYourJunta.

    I seem to recall that 'Coasting' was also about lots of other things: his relationship with his father - 'going boating, eh?' - some mysterious woman in Essex, fabulous social observations, the state of England in the early 1980s, etc.

  6. #6
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    Nov 2002
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobBrown View Post
    Originally produced in 1986, but reading it for the first time. 4 year journey round the UK but nothing like a travelogue. Bit of social commentary, bit of autobiography a bit of diatribe and a lot else besides Very opinionated, I dont agree with it all, but very well written and additionally interesting to read it throught the lens of 25 years.
    It's a long time since I've read it but it's an excellent read even if, as stated, it's not entirely about sailing. The voyage is really a launch pad for all sorts of observations and thoughts about the state of the nation and other such stuff, as already said.

    His observations about Studland are interesting: iirc various comments about perverts lurking in the sand dunes of the naturist beach, long before seahorse-stalking became de rigeur
    Itis apis spotanda bigon etoo

  7. #7
    Seajet's Avatar
    Seajet is online now Registered User
    Location : West Sussex / Hants
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    I read Coasting and Passage To Juneau and thought both quite briliant pieces of writing.

  8. #8
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    Mar 2007
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    Oh, is it any good? Picked it up at a charity some time ago but never got round to reading it.
    Might give it a try then.

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