Lost on Planet China
Where Peter Hessler and Jonathan Spence have gone before him, J. Maarten Troost adopts a "trademark gonzo" journalistic approach in an attempt to explicate China to the outside world.
While not aspiring to the explication of China as a career, with Lost on Planet China: The Strange and True Story of One Man's Attempt to Understand the World's Most Mystifying Nation, or How He Became Comfortable Eating Live Squid, madcap travel writer J. Maarten Troost (The Sex Lives of Cannibals), who unabashedly mimics the style of Michael Palin, offers a less orthodox approach to constructing a Chinese travelogue. Troost covers significant territory, wandering through Beijing and Shanghai and traveling to the Gobi Desert and backwater Tibet. While there Troost engages in what his publisher describes as his "trademark gonzo adventures," treading where wiser men may, uh, demure.