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I am a New York-based writer, travel lover, and author of The Drive North and Destination Paranormal. I have several other books in the works, including fiction.

In Patagonia

I had childhood fantasies about adventures in far off places. We traveled enough in the United States, and my parents internationally, that is was unavoidable – I would be a traveler, too. And as a young boy, I dreamed of my adventures in places whose names I did not yet know. It was much the same for Bruce Chatwin In Patagonia.
I paced through the bookstore numerous times on numerous occasions, pulling In Patagonia off the shelf only to put it back. I wanted the book, but was uneasy about purchasing it for some inexplicable reason. I really can’t put my finger on it. But, I did pick it up at least a dozen times only to put it back down. Now that everything is on sale at Borders, though, I decided to finally pick up a copy of Bruce Chatwin’s book – just at a discounted price.
In Patagonia is Bruce Chatwin’s book about his travels through Patagonia in the southern tip of South America – through both Argentina and Chile. He was enamoured by the land as a young boy due to a piece of what was supposedly dinosaur skin a family member owned when he was a child. He understood it came from that part of the world, so he dreamed of going there as a child to see that country and, maybe if he was lucky, find another piece, since this one was disposed of when the owner passed away.
I really enjoyed In Patagonia. I found it to be a timeless story of life on the edge of the world. So, even though it was first published in 1977, I imagined that not much has changed in that part of the world. And, as far as I could tell when I passed through Ushuaia, Argentina in 2004, not much has – life still goes on much as it did when Bruce Chatwin traveled through the cities and countryside.
On the other hand, though, I sometimes struggled with the language of In Patagonia. Chatwin doesn’t talk over the head of his readers, but occasionally my eyes became cross over the story and I found I needed to go back and reread what was written in order to make sure I properly understood what he was saying. I’m also troubled over the accusations that his story may not be entirely true. There is no citation to what I read and I do not know if it is factual, but it is troubling nonetheless – largely because of the controvery surrounding Greg Mortenson’s Three Cups of Tea.
Regardless of whether or not In Patagonia is partially fiction or not, the fact remains that it is also – at least – partially true. And for that simple reason, I give Bruce Chatwin the benefit of the doubt, simply because nothing has been proven otherwise, and enjoy the story for what it is – a fantastic adventure in search of a boyhood dream. So, for anyone one – boy or girl – who has had such a fantasy, I recommend it to you. It is an enjoyable tale that sparks the imagination.

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  1. Patagonia « Is It Possible To See It All - May 6, 2012

    […] In Patagonia (jasonstravels.com) […]

  2. ‘In Patagonia’ « Patos Papa - May 29, 2012

    […] In Patagonia (jasonstravels.com) Rate this:Share this:EmailPrintTwitterFacebookRedditStumbleUponTumblrDiggLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Written by J.W. Posted in read, Reviews Tagged with Bruce Chatwin, Butch Cassidy, In Patagonia, Patagonia, Prospect Park, Ranch, Theodore Roosevelt, United States […]

  3. Travel Books to Read if You’re Not Traveling | Jason's Travels - June 3, 2014

    […] lot of critics argue that Bruce Chatwin made up some of the story for In Patagonia after some of the facts didn’t quite check out. Some said the same thing about John […]

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