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The "Old Patagonian Express" was the last train Paul Theroux took in his journey from Boston to Patagonia. Some trains were superb, most were deplorable. It was a journey of contrasts in people, in temperature, in scenery, in altitude, and in attitude. The people were extraordinary, eccentric, replusive and individualistic. There was the appalling Mr Thornberry, the bogus priest in Cali and the blind writer, Borges, in Buenos Aires. Paul Theroux has also written "The Great Railway Bazaar".
Theroux travels through the former Yugoslavia, through pre-Taliban Afghanistan, and through Soviet-era Russia, throwing the last 30 years of history on its head.The Old Patagonian Express tracks Theroux, a few years later, leaving his Boston home and taking train after train through the U.S., Mexico, Central America, and down through South America to Patagonia, in southern Argentina.If his novelist's eye gives the book its richness, his sarcasm gives it its edge.