White Sands

White Sands : Experiences from the Outside World

3.59 (762 ratings by Goodreads)
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From a trip to The Lightning Field in New Mexico, to chasing Gauguin's ghost in French Polynesia, White Sands is a creative exploration of why we travel.

Episodic, wide-ranging and funny, Geoff Dyer blends travel writing, essay, criticism and fiction with a smart and cantankerous wit that is unmatched. From one of the most original writers in Britain, this is a book for armchair travellers and procrastinating philosophers everywhere.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 16mm | 180g
  • Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Main
  • Colour plate section and black and white photos.
  • 1782117423
  • 9781782117421
  • 234,639

Review Text

Brilliant . . . Dyer's eyes miss nothing PETER CONRAD Observer
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Review quote

Brilliant . . . Dyer's eyes miss nothing -- PETER CONRAD * * Observer * * An examination of some of the most fundamental questions of life . . . Inspiring and informing * * Guardian * * Even Chekhov might have envied Geoff Dyer's talent . . . Almost perfect -- JAN MORRIS * * Spectator * * [A] disregard for genre boundaries is a hallmark of his work, along with erudition, a brilliant use of language and irreverent humour . . . The nearest thing to White Sands in Dyer's back catalogue is Yoga for People Who Can't Be Bothered to Do It * * Daily Telegraph * * Surpassingly eloquent . . . there's no other writer quite like Dyer * * Time * * Illuminating . . . A collection unified by a focus on our impermanence. Why are we here? Dyer asks. With his customary elegance of thought, he sees that our attempts to transcend our situation through travel and art are motivated by our awareness of our final destination: "We are here to go somewhere else". -- LUKE BROWN * * Financial Times * * A national treasure -- ZADIE SMITH Dyer's virtue is not the whole-hearted embrace of experience and exotic locales but the parsing of degrees of disappointment. He also doesn't pretend to be heading anywhere, but then White Sands turns into a memoir and becomes unexpectedly moving . . . Dyer's tone as he relates his frightening brush with tragedy is calm and full of curiosity, possibly as a result of eschewing drama for his entire life. -- JANE SMILEY * * Los Angeles Times * * White Sands isn't just a catalog of travel mishaps, with Mr. Dyer cast as an English-speaking Monsieur Hulot. It is also a rumination on the meanings we assign the strange destinations of our pilgrimages. * * New York Times * * Reading Dyer is akin to the sudden elation and optimism you feel when you make a new friend, someone as silly as you but cleverer too, in whose company you know you will travel through life more vagrantly, intensely, joyfully * * Daily Telegraph * * Geoff Dyer is a true original - one of those rare voices in contemporary literature that never ceases to surprise, disturb and delight -- William Boyd Quite possibly the best living writer in Britain * * Daily Telegraph * * A collection of essays fusing travel writing and fiction . . . Dyer plays fast and loose with genre and category * * Telegraph * * The title essay, about picking up an ex-con hitchhiker on US Route 54 before passing a warning sign against doing exactly that, reads like a brilliant short story. It's electrifying - unlike the Northern Lights * * Tatler Magazine * * Cleverer, more self-deprecating and funnier in these essays, set all over the world and in his unique mind. Dyer's last travel book, Yoga for People Who Can't be Bothered to Do It, sold over 50,000 copies in the UK alone, and this is just as good: a travel title that asks not just where, but why, with Dyer's typical sardonic wit * * The Bookseller * *
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About Geoff Dyer

Geoff Dyer is the author of Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi and three previous novels, as well as nine non-fiction books. Dyer has won the Somerset Maugham Prize, the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction, a Lannan Literary Award, the International Center of Photography's 2006 Infinity Award for writing on photography and the American Academy of Arts and Letters' E.M. Forster Award. In 2009 he was named GQ's Writer of the Year. He won a National Book Critics Circle Award in 2012 and was a finalist in 1998. In 2015 he received a Windham Campbell Prize for non-fiction. His books have been translated into twenty-four languages. He currently lives in Los Angeles where he is Writer in Residence at the University of Southern California.
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Rating details

762 ratings
3.59 out of 5 stars
5 17% (128)
4 41% (315)
3 31% (233)
2 8% (58)
1 4% (28)
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