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How to Travel without Seeing: Dispatches from the New Latin America

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  304 ratings  ·  43 reviews

A dizzying, fast-paced tour of Latin America from one of the Spanish-speaking world’s most outstanding writers.

Lamenting not having more time to get to know each of the nineteen countries he visits after winning the prestigious Premio Alfaguara, Andrés Neuman concludes that world travel consists mostly of “not seeing.” Turning the fleeting nature of his trip to his advan
Kindle Edition, 252 pages
Published September 6th 2016 by Restless Books (first published May 2010)
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i don't believe that i've written what i've seen in this book. it would be more appropriate to say that i observed what i did because i was writing this book. a journal supposedly reflects our thoughts, experiences, and emotions. not at all. it creates them. if we didn't write, reality would disappear from our minds. our eyes would remain empty.
the fourth of andrés neuman's books to appear in english translation (all equally wonderful but wildly disparate), how to travel without seeing is a
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Nov 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: travel, nonfiction
I should title this review How to Read About Latin America Without Knowing Anything About Latin America. That's what I did. I loved the idea behind this book. Neuman traveled around Latin America, visiting nineteen countries after winning an important book award, and wrote down quick impressions in every country he visited. I must admit I didn't know any of the politicians he mentions and I only vaguely had heard of a couple of the authors he writes about. It doesn't matter. The book was fresh a ...more
Lupita Reads
Oct 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A love letter to Latin America! Neuman complies his notes and random thoughts while traveling through Latin America for a book tour. He manages to weave in politics, history and contemporary literature written by Latin American writers in his notes effortlessly, while also finding room to reminisce about different Latin American films. All in short quick paragraphs that don't necessarily follow a plot or distinct order. I truly loved that about this book but what hit home was this: "I would acce ...more
"I would pass up the desire to create totalities or to give the impression of a whole. I would embrace the fragments."

After winning the Premio Alfaguara literary prize for his novel Traveler of the Century, Neuman embarks on a huge book tour that encompasses 19 countries. This book is the collection of observations from that tour of the "new Latin America".

Starting in his birth country of Argentina (he now lives and works in Spain), he circles South America, Central America, Mexico, Puerto Rico,
Apr 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Un libro en forma de pequeñas notas escritras durante el viaje por diferentes países de latinoamérica. Países tan similares de lejos y con tantas diferencias vistos más de cerca: palabras, costumbres, calles, héroes.

Como viajar sin ver además sirve como una guía rápida si se piensa viajar por América latina y también para conocer un par de autores de cada uno de los países.
Sep 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Compelling. Engrossing. And fun.
Restless Books
Mar 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
“The buoyant Neuman takes readers on a phantasmagoric journey through Latin America…. a virtuoso demonstration of writing on the fly. After winning one of the Spanish-speaking world’s most lauded awards, the Premio Alfaguara, Neuman was sent on a massive 19-country tour that took him from his home in Argentina to far-flung appearances across Latin America. The writing is clever, light, and self-aware in a way that most travelogues are not…. The translation by Lawrence is spot-on… Neuman is prese ...more
Neuman is a charming writer, not least because he uses this opportunity (winning a prestigious literary prize, traveling throughout Latin and Central and Caribbean America) to muse about everything from local quirks and customs to the brilliance of other writers, many of them his contemporaries. I came away from this wanting to travel to some (not all) of these places and wanting to read most of the writers on whose work he reflects. Plus, that cover. Nice job, Restless Books.
Apr 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book while travelling so it was the perfect momento for me. Andres Neuman is one of those writers to take account of. I found this book a chaotic, beautiful written and poethically clever. New fan of Neuman.
María Paz Greene F
Mar 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: autobio
SÚPER BUENO EL LIBRO. Solo notas de viaje por países latinoamericanos (y Miami), pero... muy, muy disfrutables, y además muy ciertas. Me sentí como leyendo un homenaje a mi propia casa, y es que al final todos los países a este lado del océano se parecen. Y me reí también.

Así que... me encantó. Suave, sencillito, introspectivo, veraz. Nunca había oído del autor y fue una sorpresa. Una sorpresa feliz. Y uno ni siquiera tiene que haber ido a todos las países de los que habla (¡que son 19!) para en
Polaris Hall
Feb 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was truly a unique experience. Seeing Neuman's journey, or perhaps travelling alongside him, made me feel that I was getting a deeper insight to all these places he's been than I could have any other way (save travelling myself). As I got deeper and deeper into the book, it became harder and harder to pull away - I wanted more.
I got more. As the last few chapters approached, I lost track of everything else and felt submerged in Neuman's writing. His last two chapters, however, are one
The perfect companion for my trip to Argentina. I loved the set-up of flash thoughts/ little notes on Latin American culture, literature, and political history. Neuman's writing (humorous, critical, observant) is also fantastic. ...more
Antônio Xerxenesky
Livro agradável e simpático de Neuman, fragmentos perspicazes e divertidos. Boa leitura de ônibus, estando em trânsito.
Nov 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Back to Latin America, this time travel fiction/essay/micro fiction. Andrés Neuman’s latest “How To Travel Without Seeing”. Subtitled “Dispatches from the new Latin America”. Let’s let Neuman’s opening paragraph explain:

When the publishing house Alfaguara sent me the exhaustive itinerary of the book tour for their annual novel prize, I was sorry I wouldn’t have more time to spend in each place. But then I thought, isn’t that the point? Aren’t I going to experience, without even planning it, the
Jan 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
¿Cómo se viaja cuando uno apenas tiene algunos días para no ver un lugar? Esta es la premisa de Cómo viajar sin ver, colección de pensamientos de un escritor en tránsito. De Buenos Aires a San José, Neuman intenta capturar un cúmulo de contradicciones y explicárselas, si a nadie más, por lo menos a sí mismo. Fascinante exploración de la forma que toma la literatura de viajes en el siglo XXI.
Bruce Reiter
Oct 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Traveling with an author who keeps a journal of the Latin America countries he visits on a book tour. This is a great book for finding Latin American authors you can't normally locate in an American bookstore. The author's insights into the cities he visits are enjoyable and the airports entertaining. This is an easy read and the differences between Spanish and Latin American cultures well worth the effort. ...more
Oct 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recomendado
Neuman sin lugar a duda está pasando a ser uno de mis escritores favoritos, en este relato se notan con mayor facilidad.
La narrativa es única, ligera, divertida e interesante; el autor te lleva de la mano por sus experiencias, los describe simplemente pero con las características esenciales, te da la sensación de estar en distintos viajes al mismo tiempo.
Nov 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Loved it.

Unlike any other travel diary. Made me feel like I was thinking these thoughts, rather than reading them. Would love to read more by this author. He has an exceptional style.
Aug 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“I would accept that traveling means, more than anything else, not seeing. That life is a fragment rather than a unity. The only thing we have is a glimmer of attention."

The author of this book, Andres Neuman, former winner of Spain’s prestigious Alfaguara Prize and the National Critics Prize, was sent on a book tour of 18 countries by the publishing house - Alfaguara - for their annual novel prize. In his own words, "rather than write an in-depth report, I was interested in writing a cross betw
Sep 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was prepared to not like this book at all, afterall it has no real plot and is written in short musings while the author is on an extended book tour in places I have never been. I was hooked by page 25.

At first, I don't notice the hotel descriptions. By the end, I wish they were all collected together in an excel sheet so I could scroll through them and laugh. I also love how he describes public transport (or the lack of it), taxi driving and transport in general. And in at least one place, t
Nov 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A finales del año pasado descubrí 'Polaroids de grullas volando bajo un cielo naranja' de León Plascencia Ñol. En ese momento, ese libro se convirtió en mi libro de viajes favorito... hasta hoy.

Si bien dicho libro (Polaroids...) es en cuerpo y forma más completo y ofrece una experiencia adicional (su playlist musical para cada capítulo es muy adecuada), disfruté más este de Neuman aunque tenga menos calificación. La estrella que le faltó fue, irónicamente, por lo que le sobró al libro: Tegucigal
Matt Schiavenza
Jun 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A funny, whimsical account of Andres Neuman's travels across a wide swathe of Latin America, from Buenos Aires to Miami and pretty much everywhere in between. Each place — typically a capital city — includes vignettes, tossed-off observations, and newspaper clippings. Readers expecting long ruminations about each place are likely to be disappointed.

And yet Neuman's ephemeral musings gave me, a person with only a limited amount of experience in Latin America, a stronger feeling for the place than
Julia Modde
Dec 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Neuman is a clever and poetic observer. The remarks on South American politics, lifestyle and literature are amazing, funny and authentic. If you know nearly nothing about that part of Mother Earth - as I did. It is an excellent starting point to dig in into the richness of that continent.
Mark Field
Jan 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed Neuman's take on traveling in his native Latin America. Having visited most of the cities he visited I have to admit I shared many of his meditations and observations of the cities of Latin America. For me it was a nice trip down memory lane :) ...more
Sep 15, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literatura
notas y acotaciones, escritas a vuelo sobre países latinoamericanos. En algunos pasajes nos descubre y describe bien algunas características de Latinoamérica. La idea es genial pero a mi me parece que le falta chispita.
Feb 20, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Así se resume el aprendizaje de cualquier vida: darles a las cosas la bienvenida que merecen, despedirlas con la debida gratitud." ...more
EM Rajeev
Nov 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
How to travel without seeing? Wonderful Experience! A distinct travel writing
Mar 19, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Quatre ans que ce livre trône fièrement sur mon étagère, et ce n'est que maintenant que je le termine. Et je pense que c'était le moment parfait pour le lire. Même s'il a été écrit en 2009, je trouve ce livre très actuel. Le style est simple, sans chichi, le ton ironique parfait et drôle. Un plongeon dans les grandes villes d'Amérique Latine, dans leur culture, leurs événements. Bref, j'ai adoré. ...more
Tim Hoiland
Nov 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: latin-america, 2016
“A good portion of my life has been spent learning to say goodbye. That could be the lesson of any life: giving all things the welcome they deserve, and wishing them farewell with the proper gratitude. From my first move as a child up to this day, I have said a series of goodbyes, some larger, some smaller. In this succession of farewells, whose intervals have been the very measure of my life, I can identify my transformations. Before, when I returned to my native country, I felt that I was sayi ...more
Carlos Jaramillo
como es viajar por toda latinoamerica de corrido? que puedes alcanzar a ver cuando estas en un pais por solo horas? este libro es la respuesta. andres neuman viajo por el continente en el 2009, desde uruguay hasta miami. por medio de anotaciones cortas podemos ver cuales fueron las cosas que le llamaron mas la atencion. me parecio una lectura muy interesante-aun que un hubiera podido preferido leerlo en su epoca- y muy recomendada para entender que peculiaridades hay en cada uno de nuetros paise ...more
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