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Archive: Other Books > Tracks: One Woman's Journey Across 1,700 Miles of Australian Outback by Robyn Davidson - 4 stars

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message 1: by Joy D (new)

Joy D | 4611 comments Tracks: One Woman's Journey Across 1,700 Miles of Australian Outback by Robyn Davidson - 4 stars

Non-fiction about Robyn Davidson’s 1977-1978 trip across the Australian desert, accompanied by four camels and a dog. During this trip, she developed capabilities she did not know she possessed as she crossed over 1700 miles, mostly by walking and occasionally riding one of the camels. She started her trip in Alice Springs and ended at the Indian Ocean. Along the way, she interacts with various people, animals, and pests.

Filled with novelties such as:
- How to train your camel
- What it’s like to own a pet crow (not recommended!)
- Surviving in the Australian Outback

And more traditional themes such as:
- A woman confronting a machismo culture
- Finding the inner strength to deal with external perils
- Self-discovery through suffering
- The nature of solitude
- Transcending social and self-imposed limitations

One of my favorite parts of the book is her descriptions of how she adapted to the vastness of the desert, the isolation, and the dreamlike state induced by endurance in an extreme environment. She developed creative solutions to the setbacks that inevitably occurred. She seemed to intuit at some level that her journey into the desert would change her for the better. I recognized her evolution from a somewhat immature and vulnerable person to an agent in her own life. I enjoyed reading the reasons she undertook such a trip, what she learned, and how it changed her. One of her goals was to become more familiar with the Aboriginal people, and she cogently illuminates their plight. Although she was not an author at that point, the book is filled with striking imagery of the desert.

Be advised that it includes a significant amount of abuse and harm to animals, along with racism and sexism. Recommended to fans of memoirs about personal challenges, travel-related adventures, endurance tests, or self-discovery. Overall, I found it an inspirational tale of a remarkable journey, both physically and psychologically.

Link to my review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...


message 2: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Great review. I enjoyed this book, too, and also recommend it, but with caveats.


message 3: by Joy D (new)

Joy D | 4611 comments Cheryl wrote: "Great review. I enjoyed this book, too, and also recommend it, but with caveats."

Thanks, Cheryl. Glad to hear you enjoyed it too.


message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

Oh wow, sounds like a great book. I like your review. I have read a few books by women hiking the Pacific Trail and the Appalachian Trail. The books inspired me so much I have toyed with the idea of hiking one of them. I can't imagine what the Australian outback would be like.


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