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  • Through Sand & Snow

  • A Man, a Bicycle, and a 43,000-Mile Journey to Adulthood via the Ends of the Earth
  • By: Charlie Walker
  • Narrated by: Charlie Walker
  • Length: 6 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: Sports & Outdoors, Cycling
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (45 ratings)

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Summary

At age 22, Charlie Walker left home in search of adventure. Fleeing the boredom that comes with comfort, he set off on a secondhand bicycle. The aim was simple: to pedal to the furthest point in each of Europe, Asia, and Africa. He didn’t train or plan. He just started. The journey was an escape from an unremarkable existence, a pursuit of hardship, and a chance to shed the complacency of middle England. From the brutality of winter on the Tibetan plateau, to the claustrophobia of the Southeast Asian jungle, the quest provided Charlie with ample opportunity to test his mettle. Ultimately, though, the toughest challenge was entirely unforeseen.

©2017 Charlie Walker (P)2019 Charlie Walker

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What listeners say about Through Sand & Snow

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A travel book with a bit of a difference.

The prologue of this book drops us in Tibet and really draws us in and keeps us on edge. Having an interest in Tibet myself, this immediately captured my attention (although I would think it would have the same effect on someone who doesn't). I will say that most of the book isn't as good as the prologue may lead us to believe, but it's still good.

This book is sometimes descriptive, includes some background historical information but not too much and there is even a bit of romance along the way. Charlie travels half way across the world, noticeably focusing on Iran, India, Tibet and the Far East. He appears to be very spontaneous, a bit reckless and at times naive regarding things such as the amount of food he needs to eat, planning ahead and country's customs. On the other hand, he does come across as your everyday sort of guy who you could easily converse with. Quite a bit of the book seemed to be set in the Far East drinking and the like - more than I expected, but maybe this would make it more appealing to those who have done the same. There were days where Charlie cycled an incredible amount and some of it was a bit gruelling (very cold temperatures, alone in Tibet) but this is what made it such an adventure! I found it quite nice and a bit different to have the romance aspect in it. I do find some travelogues to go in to too much detail regarding history or details about places, others involve a bit too much navel-gazing, some have comedy as a focal point and many are as much about the people met along the way as the travelling and places, or moreso. This book strikes a good balance between them all and I'd say it's a good starting point for someone who hasn't read a travelogue before.  The narration is also good.

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Fantastic Adventure - Must Read

This is by far the best book I have ever read/listened too. What an adventure across countries and cultures. It is a must read. Charlie’s reading is great, and I cannot wait for book 2 to finish the adventure.

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Amazing

Really really enjoyed - authentic, honest, detailed but paced - both books are excellent - can’t fault anything and would say don’t hesitate to buy this

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A wonderful story authentically told

I have just finished the book and cannot wait to start the sequel. Charlie has a gift for story telling, for relating to people, and for distilling down the essence of the moment. I also enjoyed how he effortlessly included broad history lessons along the way about some of the countries he visited. It’s one of the most enjoyable things I have read in ages, and I felt connected to Charlie and his journey.

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Excellent!

Fantastic adventures told with eloquence and beauty. Can't wait to get stuck in to the sequel

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Loved this!

I was lucky enough to listen to Charlie speak at the school I work at, and on the strength of that, decided to buy this. It doesn’t disappoint - there’s a great mix of adventure, self exploration, humour and unabashed joy in this tale of exploration and I can’t wait to listen to the second part of his epic journey around the world!

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10/10 loved this!

10/10 enjoyed this. Soild insight into such a long ride. the only part I struggled with was towards the end I felt it lost direction in the narrative. This aside the book is perfect.

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Brilliant account of an epic journey

An inspiring account of Charlies journey. One of the best read audiobooks I have heard. Makes me want to do my own.

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incredible

written and read so well. a fantastic account of a truly epic trip. thoroughly enjoyed the highs and lows, living the experience.

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Beautifully written and narrated

A truly candid account of his journey. I would thoroughly recommend.

A mix of adventure, history, and even love - it is a fabulous story and will encourage you to reconnect to what makes up this world and the people in it.

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  • Harry Santa-Olalla
  • 09-04-19

Loved this tale of adventure!

This book made me want to jump on a bike and start peddling - anywhere!

1 person found this helpful

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  • rodney
  • 22-03-21

epic

honest, not to self centered, does a decent job of describing the places and people in the journey, so the reader feels connected to em.

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  • RunsLikeAWelshman
  • 02-04-19

It started out so great...

I was very excited through the first couple of chapters. Young guy embarking on an epic journey with a great, open mindset. Eloquent prose. Is rightfully annoyed with all the things travelers associate with obnoxious white tourists until... he becomes one himself. As soon as he hits SE Asia, the writer just turns into a boozing, entitled, womanizing tourist himself. He should have just called it a day after the Tibetan family saved his sorry ass when he almost died from exposure. Charlie Walker is a very gifted writer, has a great voice/accent, but the story line is one of the most disappointing ones I've ever listened to. I'd say sober up, get a new bike, and try again.

1 person found this helpful