Tori's Reviews > Lost on Planet China: The Strange and True Story of One Man's Attempt to Understand the World's Most Mystifying Nation, or How He Became Comfortable Eating Live Squid

Lost on Planet China by J. Maarten Troost
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's review
Sep 09, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction
Read from August 30 to September 09, 2011

I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I was able to borrow this as a 9 disc audio book from the library, and I loved listening to it each day. The narrator did a great job. My experience with this non-fiction book, however, leads me to believe that fiction books are better to listen to. so many times when I was listening, I wondered how these Chinese cities were spelled, and also wished I could look back and check some facts. but - not easily done with an audio disc. Anyway - this is a non-fiction account of J Maarten Troost's visit to China. China has never been at the top of my "must see" countries, and, I must say, after hearing this book, it slid even further to the bottom of my hypothetical list. The perpetual smog in most Chinese cities would bother me, as would constant bartering and crowding. Historical parts of China would be interesting, but as Troost tells it, it would appear that making some things look old is common. I was also appalled by the food (why would anyone NOT be a vegetarian??????) and by the cruelty to some animals (live chickens "playfully" fed to Siberian tigers....) There were definitely some sweet scenes and friendly people encountered (and not just the prostitutes...), but it sure makes me grateful to live in the US! Troost has a great sense of humor, and he entertained me thoroughly along his journey. I just wish it hadnt ended so abruptly.

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