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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Book Spotlight: Round the Bend by Alistair McGuiness




Title: Round the Bend: From Luton to Peru to Ningaloo, a Search for Life After Redundancy
Author: Alistair McGuiness
Publisher: Matador
Pages: 256
Genre: Travel
Format: Paperback; Kindle
Purchase at AMAZON

From the Amazon to the Andes and Kilimanjaro to Cape Town. This adventure story captures the reality and exhilaration of leaving home to undertake Gap Year travel in South America, Africa, Fiji and Australia.
Three things happened simultaneously. The lioness charged, Alistair fled across the parched savannah and his wife screamed for him to run faster. Stuffed deep inside his tattered rucksack was a guidebook containing advice on what to do in wildlife emergencies, which he planned to read if he survived the next thirty seconds. Future plans to climb Kilimanjaro, teach English in the Amazon and live in Australia were temporarily forgotten as he turned to face the pouncing lioness, thinking back to the words of advice from his mother-in-law. "Don't do anything silly, and look after Francine." From deep underground in a remote Bolivian mine to the scorched Australian outback, Round the Bend is an adventure travel story. It explores the turbulence of redundancy, the excitement of travel, the anguish of leaving home and the challenges of starting a new life in Australia.


Book Excerpt:
Prologue

Like many adolescents, I spent my youth staring out of classroom windows wishing I was somewhere else. While the teachers handed out homework, I dreamt of travelling to faraway shores, discovering nomadic tribes and trekking to the Seven Wonders of the World.
Depending on the subject matter and the personality of the teacher, my level of concentration wavered each lesson. Geography fascinated me, maths baffled me, religion confused me and German lessons terrified me. Nothing fazed my classmate Mik Scarlet.
He was going to be a pop star and everyone in school knew it. Trivial matters like German lessons were just a minor distraction on his path to stardom. By the time we were sixteen, Mik was networking with Gary Numan and I had retired from language lessons, hoping that laminated menus with pictures would get me through a lifetime of international travel.
But fate had other plans and twenty years after failing in German I found myself on a plane heading to Ecuador for lessons in Spanish. Maybe this time it would be different and I wouldn’t gaze out of the classroom window wishing I was somewhere else.

About the Author

Alistair McGuiness grew up in the UK in a town called Luton, which lies 30 miles north of London. Family holidays were spent in County Donegal, Ireland, staying with his Grandmother in their large family home where she had once raised fifteen children.
It was these annual trips that made Alistair realise his Great Uncles were SeanachaĆ­s (Irish story tellers). After a few pints of Guinness in the family bar, brothers Barney and Francis would entertain the evening crowds with their recitations of life in rural Ireland. As their rustic voices carried across the crowded room, Alistair would watch and listen as the animated tales mesmorised the overseas visitors.
44 countries and four decades later, Alistair now calls Australia home and in the tradition of Great Uncles Barney and Francis, loves to recite stories. He lives between the beach and the forest with his wife, two young boys and a fun puppy called Peppi. After decades of adventurous escapades Alistair is calming down and has decided to write more and bungee jump less!
He works as a Business Improvement Specialist and has just spent three years as a fly in fly out employee at a remote iron ore mine site in Western Australia. As a trainer and facilitator, he has worked in Europe and Australia and is passionate about helping people and organisations to become successful.
A fun family day for Alistair would be fishing from the local jetty with his boys, taking the puppy for a walk along the beach at sunset and cooking a scrumptious curry in the evening with his wife.
An ideal adventurous day for Alistair would be a days walking and scrambling in the Lake District with friends, followed by a visit to a village pub nestled deep in the English countryside.
For More Information



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