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The Hezbollah Hiking Club

By: Dom Joly
Narrated by: Dom Joly
Length: 8 hrs and 3 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (226 ratings)

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Summary

Dom Joly was born in Beirut and lived there until he was 18. He lived through the civil war, went to school with Osama Bin Laden, and learned to ski and speak French and Arabic. At the age of seven he was sent to an English boarding school, where he would spend term times before returning to his war-torn home. It was a schizophrenic existence. Dom's parents divorced when he was 18, and he moved permanently to the UK, becoming a diplomat, a political journalist and then famous as a man who dressed as a giant squirrel. He has been back to Lebanon only twice since.

Then he read about an attempt to encourage tourism in this long-suffering country: The Lebanon Mountain Trail. This is a hiking trail that runs from the Syrian border in the north of Lebanon, along the spine of the country's mountain range all the way to the Israeli border in the south. The trail takes 30 days to complete. 

Dom immediately decided that he must hike the trail in 2018, the year of his 50th birthday, and invited two friends along. Essentially this is a bonding adventure that just so happens to take place right in the middle of the most important geopolitical region of our times. 

The Hezbollah Hiking Club is a funny, heartwarming travel book full of insight into the Middle East, religion, friendship and growing old disgracefully.... 

It's three men on a camel...without the camel.

©2019 Dom Joly (P)2019 Hachette Audio UK

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Outstanding

Outstanding. Utterly outstanding. Joly shows an extraordinary ability to seamlessly blend a writing style that is touching, warm and laugh out loud funny, whilst simultaneously being able to combine it with fascinating insights about Lebanon as a country and a sprinkling of revealing (though never self-indulgent) moments of introspection.

For my money a masterclass in travel writing that anybody with an interest in reaching middle age, treasuring friendships or hiking downhill could do worse than buy. Highly recommended and a great listen.

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Wonderfully entertaining!

Loved it, a very entertaining, informative and in some ways educational account of Don and his dear friends undertaking more than they can chew!! I had always dismissed the Middle East as a travel destination, particularly this part of the world. I now want to go to Lebanon and walk on the LMT! Another cracker by Dom, keep them coming!

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Better than I could do but not Dark Tourist or Scary Monsters.

Not a bad listen but maybe Dom should avoid writing about Lebanon or himself, Not sure why these subjects don’t bring out his best work maybe he struggles to find comedy in subjects so close to heart. Dark Tourist and Scary Monsters and Supercreaps are IMHO incredibly humorous writing but Look at me and this book just seem to lack real substance. I truly wanted to love this book given how many times I have listened to Scary Monsters and Dark Tourist (probably 20 each) I was hopeful, while this is nowhere near as bad as Look at me or the American one with the weird female voiceover it left me feeling like I probably wouldn’t listen again. A little like the chapter of Dark Tourist set in Lebanon, I usually skip.

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Really enjoyable

Dom Jolly narrates his own book well and with excellently judged self deprecation. The story is interesting and engaging. It balances travel, history geography and comedy really well. All told - well worth a listen!

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Great fun

Great listen , Funny , entertaining and can't wait to go . Dom's narration made this even more funny than it would have been .

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Who needs Bill Bryson?

It’s always brilliant when the author reads their book, especially (maybe only) when they are so easy to listen to.
This journey made me laugh out loud, cry and close my eyes lost to imagination in equal measures. Honest, illuminating and proper funny in equal measures. Also, I’m now absolutely desperate to go to Lebanon and have bought some gorgeous za’tar in preparation. Highly recommend.

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Great listen

I’ve listened to a few book by Dom Joly now.....

We have really enjoyed this book.
My husband has trekked and travelled around Nepal and lots of Africa with his family; reading/listing to this book seems to have stirred up a travel lust for him again, which is lovely!

Book is funny, balanced, thought provoking and inspiring and has been at the heart of many conversations since finishing.

Can’t wait to hear what’s next from Mr Joly👍🏼

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Brilliant travelogue

Brilliant travelogue from someone so passionate about the region. Dom Jolys delivery is fantastic. He is able to relate to current and past historical events and interlace into hiw walking adventure.

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Brilliant

Absolutely superb audiobook, one of the very few audiobooks that made me a bit sad once it was over.
It had me in stitches a few times.

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Fantastic listen

Easy to listen, laugh out loud and interesting to hear about Lebanon - I now want to go! Highly recommend it

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  • Jen
  • 11-07-19

His master's voice

Thoroughly enjoyed it. Loved hearing it in the author's voice. Funny & informative. Many laugh out loud moments which is unusual for me - and actually made sitting in the car in traffic pleasurable!