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На все четыре стороны
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На все четыре стороны

4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  430 Ratings  ·  62 Reviews
A. A. Gill is one of the most feared writers in London, noted--according to the New York Times--for his "rapier wit." Some even consider the mere assignment of a subject to Gill a hostile act. But when the notice "AA GILL IS AWAY" runs in the Sunday Times of London, the city can rest peacefully in the knowledge that the writer is off traveling.

"My editor asked me what I w

Paperback, 221 pages
Published 2011 by Манн, Иванов И Фербер (first published 2002)
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This was a really assorted grab bag of travel essays. Apparently AA Gill is someone famous in his own country, and also apparently admired for being witty and intelligent, because his writing often oozes with his knowledge of that. That's not to say his writing is bad. Essays on the death of the Aral Sea, the "not famine" in Sudan, and a number of other areas were completely absolutely fascinating, partly because of their unusual subject matter, and partly due to the passion with which he writes ...more
Caroline Barron
Apr 23, 2014 Caroline Barron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"You'll love AA Gill," said Jarrod, "because his travel writing zooms out to reflect on the greater human condition. It's like," said Jarrod, "he's leaving a how-to guide for his children after he's passed." Well holy sh**, that was it - get thee to the library - immediately. And that was how 'AA Gill is Away' ended up beside my bed.

Gill is a funny guy, but knows enough about how the world fits together to give broad historical, political insight into his subjects. I read somewhere he likes to "
Jan 01, 2009 Tripp rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There are some travel writers, like Rory Stewart of the Places in Between fame, who focus so little on themselves that they seem to vanish from the page. AA Gill is not one of those writers. His giant personality, opinion and humor threaten to crowd out whatever subject is at hand. When he is focused he can be quite acerbic, although generally in a witty manner. In AA Gill is Away, his takes on Japan (populated by aliens who are trying hard to look human) and Germany (the section is titled Hunfo ...more
"Mad in Japan." Fantastic.
Kingshuk Mukherjee
I remember discovering Led Zeppelin at the age of 15- floored that one band could make so much delightful noise. I have vivid memories of googling to see if they'd be playing in LA or Irvine anytime soon, and promptly being crushed to learn John Bonham had died over 20 years ago. The remaining members said there could be no band without Bonzo, and they went their separate ways.

I feel the same about A.A. Gill's writing. I came across Gill only after reading a tweet that he had died of cancer.

Christine Yen
May 26, 2017 Christine Yen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun essay collection, reasonably quick read.
Abigail Tovell
Jul 05, 2017 Abigail Tovell rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Snarky word porn.
Jan 31, 2017 Seán rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
a master of angry writing and emotional manipulation......but also riotously funny
Marina Sharipova
Jul 25, 2015 Marina Sharipova rated it really liked it
Кто не любит путешествовать? Таких людей практически нет. Если вы летом остаетесь в городе, обязательно прочтите книгу "На все четыре стороны”, чтобы мысленно перенестись в кругосветное путешествие.

Книга представляет собой путевые заметки журналиста Адриана Антони Гилла - его впечатления от поездок в разные страны. Как признается сам автор в предисловии, он любить брать интервью у мест. Приезжает в новое место, не читая советы бывалых, не смотрит в путеводители, а целиком и полностью полагается
Aug 06, 2013 Fiona rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
Recommended to Fiona by: no-one
At the beginning of this book Gill describes his halting beginnings in journalism, troubled, as he is, by dyslexia. Gill claims that as he matured and settled into his writing, opinions and outlook, any lingering concerns about dyslexia were transferred to those who engage with him and his work. He expropriated the condition and its stigma, and in the process, freed himself.

Gill's work is intrinsically personal, he constructs beautifully astute observations about places. This is, after all, tra
Jenny Sparrow
Jan 23, 2015 Jenny Sparrow rated it liked it
Эту книгу подарили мне на день рождения почти 3,5 года назад, но я в последние годы читаю практически только на английском и на Kindle, тем более на обложке стояла приписка "Возьми в отпуск", а таких отпусков, где можно будет много читать, у меня в то время не предвиделось. Поэтому я взялась за книжку только тогда, когда мы прошлой осенью поехали на Сардинию, где обещалось много солнца и моря и возможности изредка почитать. Но так и не закончила, поэтому взяла книгу снова в наш только что заверш ...more
Feb 26, 2014 Mitchell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, essays
This is another book I used to flick through during the endless tedious hours at my bookstore job. AA Gill is a British columnist, ostensibly a travel writer, but not the kind with a tagline at the end which says "the writer was a guest of X Travel." Gill is as much a political and social writer as he is a travel writer, and this compendium of his columns for the Sunday Times ranges across topics from a Sudanese famine to the California pornography industry to one of the worst environmental disa ...more
Sep 28, 2013 Brooke rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A refreshing glimpse into the most unexpected adventures and the mind of risible critic.

About his methodology- " I trust my memory to filter out what's important. I talk about where I've been as much as possible. the act of turning it into stories, descriptions and anecdotes and having to repeat them, watching people react, begins to form an armature for the piece."

About Haile Selassie- "All his life he seems to have had only one impervious sarcophagal expression, a granite stare that glares at
Stephen Vizinczey
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Sergio GRANDE films
I'm tempted to write "another great collection of AA Gill's articles and essays" but there's no such thing as "another one". The entire body of Adrian Gill's work is one great collection.

Take this story out of this book and put it there, remove the other one and bring it here. Nothing changes. One wouldn't notice the swaps simply because all the stories are equally good, equally well written.

How well written?, you ask. This this the opening paragraph in the last story of the book: “There are da
Steve McCoy
Feb 20, 2008 Steve McCoy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This one is a really good counterpoint to the Thompson book. Gill, like Thompson, aims for a half-serious, half-comedic tone with some literary merit to his writing. Gill, unlike Thompson, succeeds. This is a really terrific collection of travel stories that are subdivided into loose geographic groups. The pieces alternate between being very funny and quite sad, often within the space of a few pages. Gill is adept at setting up the reader with a laundry list of complaints followed by a truly red ...more
Mar 11, 2007 Micha rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A.A. Gill is a rhetorician, not a deep thinker, but is nonetheless a hilarious motherfucker. He usually writes about food for the Sunday Times, but this one is about travel. Takes controversial positions to be inflammatory. Skewers German, English and especially Japanese culture ("If Japan were a person, you wouldn't laugh at it, you'd smile pityingly at its parents and whisper that you're sure they can do wonderful things with medication these days. If Japan were a person, it wouldn't be allowe ...more
Mar 21, 2008 Roniq rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those into travel essays, rapid fire descriptions and in your face journalism
Recommended to Roniq by: loaned to me from a friend.
Shelves: favorites
I loved this book!! If you like stories of travel Adventure that make you cringe, this is the book for you. Most people wouldn't venture to half the places A.A has been. Ballsy is all I can say. Truly gifted writer with a unique insight to such places as L.A, Where he makes a porn film. He also writes of India, Russia, Sudan and Cuba to name a few. I laughed out loud many times reading this in addition to feeling sick at times. An in your face, shockingly original and honest look through the eye ...more
at the top tier of all travel writing i've ever encountered...there are no sacred cows (watch out, japan!) and gill takes no prisoners. i've read his columns in vanity fair before and these are as funny as those, but reading a collection of them together i found myself marveling that he can come away from a trip abroad with a totally cynical and sometimes even angry view of humanity and the world's backwaters, but still be fired up to head off somewhere else. the man is like the charlie brown of ...more
Jan 19, 2015 Jeanne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love travel books! And while my geography is fairly decent, I always keep an atlas nearby to find the out-of-the-way places mentioned. This was my first encounter with Gill, so I was unaware of his controversial writing persona. His caustic approach is toned down a bit by his wry humor and even his compassion shines through on occasion. He packs a lot of information (history, politics, economics) in the 300 pages, and I came away with a better understanding of some past events.
I understand hi
Martin Budd
Jan 29, 2014 Martin Budd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A truly ferocious talent, he crafts words like fine needle sharp stiletto's, a truly astonishing read. This is one of the few books I have ever read where I have experienced such a breathtaking range of emotion from laugh out loud to heart ache. He has a savant's awareness of human nature it is as if he is aware of your thoughts.....Profound.
Greg D'Avis
Sep 12, 2012 Greg D'Avis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Surprised by how much I liked this -- my only knowledge of Gill was his article about Albania that got him in some trouble. This is far more serious and thoughtful than I expected, with a very sharp writing style. Oddly, the least interesting pieces are those closest to his home -- the British Isles pieces were pretty light. Other than that? Very good.
Will Marshall
Jun 13, 2012 Will Marshall rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Whilst the personality is overly egotistical, and the point of view increasingly predictable throughout the book, AA Gill is arguably one of the best crafter of phrases and similar word-smithery writing in England today, conjuring the most vibrant of images, "war memorials cast from boiled cannons" being only an example of this.
Jul 21, 2009 Susan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
We are given fair warning in the introduction that there are many regional terms in the book and references to British culture that may not make sense to everyone. That proved more true than I'd expected. Either way, I appreciate Gill's perspectives, love his travel methodology and will look for more that he has written.
Mark Field
Some interesting writing here, but overall I wasn't grabbed by it. Gill's caustic wit sometimes gets the better of him with his opinions, but then again, its his personal take on things. One thing I would have liked was the date / place of publication for the pieces included - more hopeful as this book ages.
Tara Callaway
So I have to admit I didn't read the entire book. It is made up of stories about this guys travel. I did start at the beginning until I decided to read about a place I had been to, so I skipped ahead to Berlin. I got really ticked off and completely disagreed with his take on Berlin. He couldn't recover after that so I put the book down.
Jan 30, 2016 Beth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a series of articles about AA Gill's travels around the world.
The stories range from extraordinary, bitter and funny depictions of parts of the world that are often little known, to rather better known areas observed just a bit differently.
The quality of the stories varies from 5 star to 3 star, but are almost always interesting.
May 09, 2009 Kirsty rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Smart, caustic, laugh out loud, snort through my nose then sneer! Loved it! Wish it were in print in the US so I could give a copy to all of my friends who love to travel. I'm not anxious to read more of aa gill for fear that my love of this book will be tainted. Thanks mum for giving me your copy.
Lauren E
Jun 05, 2016 Lauren E rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed it very much- great writing, loved the point of view of travel- was a little turned off by his slightly too cruel tone a couple of times, but he saves it by laughing and/or making it clear he knows it's personal prejudice. Highly recommend to travelers.
Mar 01, 2012 Irynababich rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Cleverly written, provides insite to life in about twelve countries. Unlike many books about travel, this one seems to go beyond what's on the surface. I also enjoyed the style (although that might be partly thanks to the translator - I read the book in Russian)
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