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Silverland: A Winter Journey Beyond the…
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Silverland: A Winter Journey Beyond the Urals (edição: 2008)

de Dervla Murphy (Autor)

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546390,104 (3.68)5
Silverland charts Dervla Murphy's extraordinary expedition through the snowscapes of Far Eastern Russia. No stranger to adventure, the intrepid septuagenarian's mid-winter journey takes her beyond Siberia to the furthest corners of Russia - areas proximate to Japan, Mongolia and the Arctic Circle. Here she discovers a strange world of lynx and elks, indigenous tribes and shamanism, reindeer broth and taiga-berry pie. She takes the coal-fuelled slow-train around regions hardly exposed to tourism and there she meets a host of colourful and generous characters. They invite this unconventional Irish Babushka into their homes where she enjoys fascinating fireside debate bolstered by steaming samovars of sweet tea. Just like its author, Silverland is insightful, warm and truly original.… (mais)
Membro:danoomistmatiste
Título:Silverland: A Winter Journey Beyond the Urals
Autores:Dervla Murphy (Autor)
Informação:John Murray (2008), 304 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
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Silverland: A Winter Journey Beyond the Urals de Dervla Murphy

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Silverland is a well detailed account of Dervla Murphy's slow train trip across the barren Russian landscape via BAM, the Baikal-Amur Mainline. When I say slow, I mean slow. Like 20 miles an hour slow. She prefers it this way. As she travels she recounts the history and statistics of BAM, mourns the loss of Siberian and Ewenki cultures, stoically observes societal norms (the tragedy of "vodka orphans" strikes a chord), and waxes about political change; all the while struggling to communicate with the people she meets. The language barrier sometimes prevents her from embarking on heavy and/or controversial debates. She is very knowledgeable about the country's history and could hold her own had she been able to communicate her views effectively.
  SeriousGrace | Nov 14, 2019 |
One can't but help despair when reading this book. The scale of devastation that has been wrought by man on that vast expanse called Sibera through logging, industrial pollution is very heart wrenching. It seems that nothing has gone right for the hapless residents of this erstwhile pristine wilderness. Starting with the conquest by the tsars, the extreme cruelty imposed by Stalin to the degenration witnessed under the Soviet Empire and the current destruction under a mafia controlled sham capitalism.
  danoomistmatiste | Jan 24, 2016 |
One can't but help despair when reading this book. The scale of devastation that has been wrought by man on that vast expanse called Sibera through logging, industrial pollution is very heart wrenching. It seems that nothing has gone right for the hapless residents of this erstwhile pristine wilderness. Starting with the conquest by the tsars, the extreme cruelty imposed by Stalin to the degenration witnessed under the Soviet Empire and the current destruction under a mafia controlled sham capitalism.
  kkhambadkone | Jan 17, 2016 |
Not one of Dervla Murphy's better efforts. She joins both Eric Newby and Laurens van der Post in the list of authors who have failed to make a rail journey in Russia's far east an enjoyable experience. Although Ms Murphy is better researched than either of the other two she fails to get to grips with the country and, like them, descends into writing mainly about its failings. Like them, and many others, she is fascinated to the point of obsession with its immediate Soviet past rather than its long term cultural depths. She deserves some credit though for her perpetual good humour and her social leanings which give her sympathy with ordinary people.

But it's a thin book padded out with long passages of potted history taken from her post-journey research. Which she no doubt discovered she needed when she realised she didn't have much else of note to say. She, along with the other authors, took time to realise that the seeming fantasy of along distance train journey through the Siberian forests is in fact pretty boring. The train goes slowly through mostly unremarkable scenery. Things glanced through the carriage window are fleeting images. It' a diesel powered skate over the surface. Inevitable given her lack of Russian language ability.

Annoying also that Ms Murphy claims as friends the strangers with whom she meets and converses on the train. Worse that she shamelessly imposes on their hospitality to scrounge beds and meals. And eventually irritating that she takes perverse pleasure in doing things the hard way just so that she can feel she has experienced a place as its poorer inhabitants would. Aimlessly taking trams to anonymous suburbs doesn't take her to the real Siberia any more than taking a taxi or a guided tour. ( )
  Steve38 | Jun 8, 2013 |
Murphy is marvellous: unflappable and unafraid of travelling where others wouldn't dare to tread; she is also observant, knowledgable and curious - all qualities you'd expect in an excellent travel writer.
(November 2009) ( )
  Tselja | Jun 16, 2010 |
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Silverland charts Dervla Murphy's extraordinary expedition through the snowscapes of Far Eastern Russia. No stranger to adventure, the intrepid septuagenarian's mid-winter journey takes her beyond Siberia to the furthest corners of Russia - areas proximate to Japan, Mongolia and the Arctic Circle. Here she discovers a strange world of lynx and elks, indigenous tribes and shamanism, reindeer broth and taiga-berry pie. She takes the coal-fuelled slow-train around regions hardly exposed to tourism and there she meets a host of colourful and generous characters. They invite this unconventional Irish Babushka into their homes where she enjoys fascinating fireside debate bolstered by steaming samovars of sweet tea. Just like its author, Silverland is insightful, warm and truly original.

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