Sarah'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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Dec 01, 09

bookshelves: travel
Read in December, 2009

I think I may have found a new favorite travel writer. Troost has a laid back sense of humor that makes for quick (but hilarious) reading. I’ve yet to visit China, but I made a trip to Thailand this year. When people ask me what it was like, I’m at a loss as to how to even put the experience into words. Culture shock is the easy way of putting it, but it falls so far short of truly explaining how I felt. Lost on Planet China hit the nail on the head for filling in the words that I could not find. What I really like about Troost is that while I am sure he had some preconceived notions of China prior to his trip, he sets them aside and opens himself up to whatever comes his way. He has no agenda. He’s not out to make you think one way or another. He’s just a traveler looking to explore cultures different than his and share his misadventures with readers. There were numerous points throughout the book that I would stop and reread a passage to my husband because I just had to share them with someone. I was especially tickled to read about Michael Jackson songs playing on the train to Tibet. I had just had a conversation with someone about the perplexity of why it seems like no matter were you go, you can’t escape American music. It’s like it’s a virus sweeping the world. I would give this book six stars if I could and I’m already planning my next trip to the bookstore to pick up more of Troost’s books.
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