MAGIC

Townsville Bulletin - Townsville Eye - - READ -

Jan Golem­biewski

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Some books grab you by the scruff of the neck and don’t let go un­til the last page is turned. But I can’t re­mem­ber the last time it hap­pened with a travel mem­oir. Young Golem­biewski aban­doned uni to travel, armed with a be­lief in magic and a need to turn his half-formed ideas into real ex­pe­ri­ence. In Belize, he found a Rasta­far­ian mys­tic and be­came a be­liever — in God and mir­a­cles. That sent him on a jour­ney to “Mother Africa” and a dan­ger­ous, near-fa­tal en­counter with the Sa­hara Desert. Aban­don­ing ev­ery­thing he owned, in­clud­ing his pass­port, he handed his life over to God, trust­ing he would find or be given what he needed to sur­vive. And he did sur­vive — drugs, jail, tor­ture, sear­ing heat, gun­happy border guards, near-star­va­tion and de­hy­dra­tion — all with his be­liefs in­tact. Thirty years later, he’s a qual­i­fied ar­chi­tect and world leader in the field of psy­cho­log­i­cal de­sign. What I need next is the book that de­scribes what hap­pened in be­tween. CORINNA HENTE

VER­DICT: Sur­real and stun­ning

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