"A high-spirited, comic ramble into the savage Outback populated by irreverent, beer-guzzling frontiersmen." --Chicago Tribune
"A fascinating insight into what we're all about on the highways and byways along the outback track." --The Telegraph (Sydney)
Swept off to live in Sydney by his Australian bride, American writer Tony Horwitz longs to explore the exotic reaches of his adopted land. So one day, armed only with a backpack and fantasies of the open road, he hitchhikes off into the awesome emptiness of Australia's outback.
What follows is a hilarious, hair-raising ride into the hot red center of a continent so desolate that civilization dwindles to a gas pump and a pub. While the outback's terrain is inhospitable, its scattered inhabitants are anything but. Horwitz entrusts himself to Aborigines, opal diggers, jackeroos, card sharks, and sunstruck wanderers who measure distance in the number of beers consumed en route. Along the way, Horwitz discovers that the outback is as treacherous as it is colorful. Bug-bitten, sunblasted, dust-choked, and bloodied by a near-fatal accident, Horwitz endures seven thousand miles of the world's most forbidding real estate, and some very bizarre personal encounters, as he winds his way to Queensland, Alice Springs, Perth, Darwin--and a hundred bush pubs in between.
Horwitz, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of two national bestsellers, Confederates in the Attic and Baghdad Without a Map, is the ideal tour guide for anyone who has ever dreamed of a genuine Australian adventure.
"Lively, fast-paced and amusing . . . a consistently interesting and entertaining account." --Kirkus Reviews
"Ironical, perceptive and subtle . . . will have readers getting out their maps and itching to follow Horwitz's tracks. . . . The internal journey is his finest achievement; he allows the reader into his heart, to go travelling with him there, sharing his adventures of the spirit." --Sunday Times (London)
About the Author
Tony Horwitz is a native of Washington, D.C., and a graduate of Brown University and Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism. He worked for many years as a reporter, first in Indiana and then during a decade overseas in Australia, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, mostly covering wars and conflicts as a foreign correspondent for "The" "Wall Street Journal". After returning to the States, he won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting and worked as a staff writer for "The" "New Yorker" before becoming a full-time author.
His books include "Midnight Rising", "A Voyage Long and Strange", "Blue Latitudes", a national and "New York Times "bestseller about the Pacific voyages of Captain James Cook, "Baghdad Without a Map", a national bestseller about the Middle East, and "Confederates in the Attic", a national and "New York Times "bestseller about the Civil War.
Horwitz has been a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University and a visiting scholar at the John Carter Brown Library at Brown University. He lives with his wife, Geraldine Brooks, and their son, Nathaniel, on the island of Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.