Dylan's Reviews > Tracks: A Woman's Solo Trek Across 1700 Miles of Australian Outback

Tracks by Robyn Davidson
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Jan 14, 2011

it was amazing
Recommended to Dylan by: Mrs. Cyberhobo Kuhn
Read from December 21, 2010 to January 13, 2011

I'm not really fascinated by camels, but I am a sucker for stories of desert landscapes transforming human beings, and this book is a moving marriage of the two.

I found the portrayal of the way immersion in a landscape like the Australian outback can affect a person really powerful. This idea is extended from the author, who is changed by her journey, to the aboriginal people as being truly formed by the land. I've experienced just enough of this to be transformed a little myself in reading it, reminded that lightheartedness can be achieved in most situations, and nursing a longing to know my landscape in a way that I never will.

Camels are the binding thread throughout the tale. They are characters in the story. While it didn't make me a camel romantic, I did enjoy getting to know some camels in detail. The struggles of the camels, woven in with the struggles of the author, make the story.

My wife, who recommended the book to me, had trouble connecting with the motivation of the author. Robyn Davidson is inexplicably driven and even maniacal, but I had no trouble accepting this. I actually had a little bit of an opposite reaction - the mysterious origin of her drive to devote her life to this journey made her self-examinations and revelations more interesting to me. Maybe it boils down to how much identification we have with her in our own mysterious needs and drives.
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