Asia Overland: Tales of Travel on the Trans-Siberian & Silk Road

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 10 October, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 10 October, 2010, 12:00am

Asia Overland: Tales of Travel on the Trans-Siberian & Silk Road
by Bijan Omrani
Odyssey HK$240

Some books beg to be read and this is one of them, with its photograph of a cheeky-looking camel staring out from the cover almost teasing the reader with the promise of a rip-roaring ride. In fact, superb photographs leap off the page at every turn, igniting the farthest recesses of readers' imagination and drawing them further between the covers of what is a wonderfully evocative account of central Asia. Who, after all, could be less than awe inspired by sumptuous images such as the extraordinarily desolate beauty of Lake Van in eastern Turkey. Or the rare close-up shot of St Basil's Cathedral in Moscow that dispenses with its fluted profile in favour of its intricate and mesmerising candybox detail. Moreover, the accompanying captions also do justice to what is an immensely readable account. For many this will be the definitive handbook to accompany them on their travels, with text that fills in the history of this beguiling region rather than a list of places to crash and eat. If this doesn't make readers grab their passports and bolt for the nearest airport, nothing will.