“Tell Max that it concerns the Sandman. Tell him I have two proofs and can bring them with me.”
5 out of 5 spies can not be trusted.
"I have been able to recognise in myself after a year;s sojourn the inertia which as a tourist I condemned so harshly in other people".Indeed, perhaps my disconnection from the text is an aversion to my own gauche behaviour as a tourist. Now, upon reflection, my initial view of the novel is elevated and perhaps I initially judged it too harshly. Discussions of the novel are doubtlessly full of commentary about the language and racism which are part and parcel of the time in which it was written, and sadly still prevail often today. The novel is also in some ways a rite of passage, a young naive man goes to remote Africa to discover a broader world view. That is perhaps the reason we all travel - to broaden our horizon and , as the title suggests, a trip without the benefit of coded directions is being truly adrift in the world. There are a surfeit of descriptions of topless native women in this novel and a real sexualisation that adds a further barrier to my enjoyment, and yet reflects the social norms of the day. I finished this novel on a rivercat from Olympic Park to Barangaroo on a beautiful Sydney sunny day - that was the journey it accompanied me on.
I really loved the way each character vented their own, different perspective. It makes for a fantastic read. My only quibble and the reason for deducting one point, is that there wasn't more of it. Proof positive that 14 pages can still pack a punch. I mean there's rape, murder, violence and intrigue and who knows the truth? One gets closer to it with each step.