PRODUCT: Best Read of the Year, The Backpacker by John Harris


Before setting off on my travels I purchased an array of books that wrote on the subject of travel… cliché I know, but there we are.

…it will nudge some part of you that is usually told to behave.

On Amazon I found The Backpacker by John Harris and this has  become one of my favourite reads of the year, if not one of my favourite’s full stop.

You begin by hating the author and then very quickly fall in love with his ability to explore the world on almost no means at all, expect for a few good friends and a very small conscious.

Once I’d finished the book I realised two things: Firstly, I felt like such a do-gooder and almost immediately wanted to do something reckless and impulsive, but then I realised I would get caught and it would all end terribly and this is why I don’t do those things. Secondly, the author must of changed his name because he commits some hilarious and jaw dropping misdeeds throughout Australasia. It’s also impossible to find a photo of him on Google.

Harris’ novel is witness to those things you hear people tell tales of: “this happened to a friend of a friend” – but they actually happen to him and with every page you read it will nudge some part of you that is usually told to behave.


3 thoughts on “PRODUCT: Best Read of the Year, The Backpacker by John Harris

  1. Hi Nat,
    thanks for the review. I look forward to giving this book a try sometime. Right now I’m reading Colin Thurbron’s ‘Shadow of the Silk Road’…It’s the most beautifully written book I’ve ever read, and I’m only three chapters in! I’ve never read a travel writing book in prose before, it conjures up so many vivid pictures of China and Tibet. I think you’d enjoy it. His journey continues through Afghanistan, Iran and Turkey following the history of the silk trade.
    Also, have you read the autobiography from the creators of the Lonely Planet guides? That’s worth a read for those of us with “itchy feet”.

    Happy New Year and well wishes,

    1. Hey Alice! Happy New Year 🙂 Thanks for the recommendations, Lonely Planet have got some really good books out actually. They do a lot of short stories collaborated from travel writers; but I’ve not read their auto, defo worth a look.

      Where are you and how are things going? Oz is 45 degrees. I’m melting! xx

      1. Hi, sorry for an incredibly late reply! My masters course is keeping me very busy…trying my best to squeeze in the study hours in between work. While you’ve been melting I’ve been freezing in Korea. But apart from one day last week when it was -20 degrees C, it’s been getting warmer and rain has finally washed the snow away – strangely, just as Britain is starting to get their winter. And, as usual, hilariously over-dramatic UK headlines prevail!! I hope you’ve had a lovely stay on the farm. Have you got a good tan? Enjoy your beach time, too! I spent my Christmas hol climbing a mountain in Seoul with Harry, it was really fun but I’m longing for beach time to hurry up.
        Be well sunny lady xx

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