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An Inland Voyage
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 159818699X, Paperback)What am I to say for my book? Caleb and Joshua brought back from Palestine a formidable bunch of grapes; alas! my book produces naught so nourishing; and for the matter of that, we live in an age when people prefer a definition to any quantity of fruit.
I wonder, would a negative be found enticing? for, from the negative point of view, I flatter myself this volume has a certain stamp. Although it runs to considerably upwards of two hundred pages, it contains not a single reference to the imbecility of God's universe, nor so much as a single hint that I could have made a better one myself. -- I really do not know where my head can have been. I seem to have forgotten all that makes it glorious to be man. -- 'Tis an omission that renders the book philosophically unimportant; but I am in hopes the eccentricity may please in frivolous circles.
To the friend who accompanied me I owe many thanks already, indeed I wish I owed him nothing else; but at this moment I feel towards him an almost exaggerated tenderness. He, at least, will become my reader: -- if it were only to follow his own travels alongside of mine.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:06 -0400)
Robert Louis Stevenson was not only a gifted writer; he was also an indefatigable traveller. His thirst for adventure was formed by his boyhood visits to remote Scottish lighthouses, and he spent much of his life fleeing the rigours of cold climes and social orthodoxy. Along the way he travelled through the Cevennes with a donkey, booked passage to and across America, and finally famously settled in Samoa in the South Pacific. The canoeing trip through Belgium and northern France that Stevenson describes in An Inland Voyage was taken in 1876, when the author was 26 years old. Stevenson and his companion, Sir Walter Grindlay Simpson, each had a kayak-style wooden canoe, with a deck and rigged with a sail. Starting in Belgium and then travelling downriver in France from Maubeuge (near Mons) to Pontoise on the outskirts of Paris, the book paints a charming picture of Western Europe at a more innocent time.Travel writing.
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