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The Sex Lives of Cannibals: Adrift in the…

The Sex Lives of Cannibals: Adrift in the Equatorial Pacific (2004)

by J. Maarten Troost

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1,632636,549 (3.89)1 / 114

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Showing 1-5 of 62 (next | show all)
A wonderful self-deprecating humorous book.

Those who like the genre it falls in would not get a better read. ( )
  jaeger84 | Jan 13, 2018 |
I have conflicted feelings about this book. The author is good at crafting humorous turns of phrases, which makes me like it. But most of the time, the author also comes across as a jerk with no cultural sensitivity whatsoever. The way he describes things, the residents of Kiribati don't do things the way he's used to, so they're strange. ( )
  Lindoula | Sep 25, 2017 |
Troost's take on the role of various aid agencies in distributing goodies to expatriate experts and local govt cum thugs agrees pretty well with mine, and I like him for that. But despite some very funny and humble stories about adjusting to island life, I'm rather disappointed that he doesn't really seem to interact with people on the island beyond a superficial level. He refers to all the teary-eyed people seeing them off as they leave, but I don't really know who those people would be, except the various other expats he seems to have mostly hung around with. It seems a little hypocritical to wax indignant over a process that provides one's own bread and butter. ( )
  kaitanya64 | Jan 3, 2017 |
This is a memoir by Troost and is very funny. His wife gets a job equatorial island, Kiribati, he goes along as he is unemployed and he feels he will fit in because the majority of island inhabitants are unemployed. This is funny but also a book that looks at life on an atoll, this is not paradise. It is hot, dirty, no food, and life is precarious as there are many things that will kill you. ( )
  Kristelh | Jul 7, 2016 |
"The lagoon seemed incandescent, a startling fusion of greens and blues", 5 April 2016

This review is from: The Sex Lives of Cannibals: Adrift in the Equatorial Pacific (Audio CD)
Entertaining read about the time the author and his girlfriend spent in Kiribati, some twenty years ago. He enters an alien world - where the plane can't land because of pigs on the runway, where the food choices are limited and there are problems with pollution, water shortages and feral dogs. The government seems shockingly lackadaisical ... until the Interministerial Song and Dance Competition takes place:
"I tried to think of an American equivalent to the competition. I strained to imagine the Department of Defense dressed up in grass skirts and lavalavas, preparing to dance against the dreaded Department of Health and Human Services. I struggled to imagine Madeleine Albright in a snug-fitting pandanus bra."
This is a light and humourous read, but unlike some such travel memoirs, the author really writes well and I enjoyed it and got a good impression of this remote country. ( )
  starbox | Apr 5, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 62 (next | show all)
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For Sylvia and Lukas
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One day, I moved with my girlfriend Sylvia to an attoll in the Equatorial Pacific.
Still, I tried to teach the dogs to growl menacingly at anyone in pants. Only Mormon missionaries wore pants in Tarawa.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0767915305, Paperback)

At the age of twenty-six, Maarten Troost—who had been pushing the snooze button on the alarm clock of life by racking up useless graduate degrees and muddling through a series of temp jobs—decided to pack up his flip-flops and move to Tarawa, a remote South Pacific island in the Republic of Kiribati. He was restless and lacked direction, and the idea of dropping everything and moving to the ends of the earth was irresistibly romantic. He should have known better.

The Sex Lives of Cannibals tells the hilarious story of what happens when Troost discovers that Tarawa is not the island paradise he dreamed of. Falling into one amusing misadventure after another, Troost struggles through relentless, stifling heat, a variety of deadly bacteria, polluted seas, toxic fish—all in a country where the only music to be heard for miles around is “La Macarena.” He and his stalwart girlfriend Sylvia spend the next two years battling incompetent government officials, alarmingly large critters, erratic electricity, and a paucity of food options (including the Great Beer Crisis); and contending with a bizarre cast of local characters, including “Half-Dead Fred” and the self-proclaimed Poet Laureate of Tarawa (a British drunkard who’s never written a poem in his life).

With The Sex Lives of Cannibals, Maarten Troost has delivered one of the most original, rip-roaringly funny travelogues in years—one that will leave you thankful for staples of American civilization such as coffee, regular showers, and tabloid news, and that will provide the ultimate vicarious adventure.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:41 -0400)

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The author discusses his two-year stay on a remote South Pacific island, a place where he anticipated a romantic paradise but instead experienced humorous misadventures and a host of environmental challenges.

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Average: (3.89)
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1.5 1
2 27
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