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The unvarnished reality in these pages might just make you more eager than ever to hit the road. A dead-on demolition job The book is a savagely funny act of revenge. A witty, provocative tale that … packs in plenty of local flavor and amusing anecdotes. Well-written, funny, and fast-paced. It's dirty, scandalous, and it'll give you a completely… More….

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  • Book review: To Hellholes and Back by Chuck Thompson.

About this product Product Information The guru of extreme tourism sets out to face his worst fears in Africa, India, Mexico City, and most terrifying of all at Disney WorldIn the widely-acclaimed "Smile When You're Lying," Chuck Thompson laid bare the travel industry's dirtiest secrets. Now he's out to discover if some of the world's most ill-reputed destinations live up to their bad raps, while confronting a few of his own travel anxieties in the process. Whether he's traveling across the Congo with a former bodyguard from notorious dictator Joseph Mobutu's retinue or diving into the heart of India's monsoon season, "To Hellholes and Back" delivers Thompson's trademark combination of hilarious stories and wildly provocative opinions, as well as some surprising observations about America's evolving place in the world.

Travel Book: “To Hellholes and Back: Bribes, Lies and the Art of Extreme Tourism” – The Denver Post

Additional Product Features Dewey Edition. It's dirty, scandalous, and it'll give you a completely fresh perspective on travel, travel writing, and the travel industry. Well-written, funny, and fast-paced. A dead-on demolition job The book is a savagely funny act of revenge.

The unvarnished reality in these pages might just make you more eager than ever to hit the road. A witty, provocative tale that Well-written, funny, and fast-paced The shocking low point came after the massage when the guru climbed naked into the shower with me to wash my back and me having no small difficulty convincing him to leave. Even nude and soapy, you have to remain resilient in the face of the Indo hard sell.

The most instructive retail lesson comes in a dingy textiles shop in Delhi -- everything from elephant-embroidered eye pillows to elephant-embroidered shoulder bags -- where I watch a middle-aged French couple in matching faux-leopard-skin outfits attempt to drive a hard bargain with the equally intense owner, a tall, skinny guy with watery eyes and a mouthful of canine teeth. The French want ten elephant-embroidered baskets for 30 euros, exactly one-third the asking price.

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You take 50 euros, we take all the baskets. The French woman appears to believe that 50 euros will feed all of Delhi for a week, but the owner still wants his 90 euros and the couple eventually storms off in a cloud of disgust.

bribes, lies, and the art of extreme tourism

As the climax of this petty drama is being reached, a gaunt, unshaven Brit, the same form of post-colonial ghost you see all over Asia, wanders into the shop with his two cents. There is no sense getting angry about it. Jump to Navigation.

You are here Asia Pacific India Mumbai. Travel writer Chuck Thompson on the evil genius of Indian salesmen Travel writer Chuck Thompson on the evil genius of Indian salesmen How tenacious are they?

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For his new book, "To Hellholes and Back," Thompson found out the hard way. Again and again. The biggest hassle in India Indian salesmen are impossible. One lousy magazine "No" is not in their vocabulary.

To Hellholes and Back: Bribes, Lies, and the Art of Extreme Tourism

A typical, verbatim exchange: Me entering restaurant : Is the full menu available? Waiter: Yes, sir! Please have a seat. Waiter: Yes, sir.