The hungry traveller is frankly a touch too touristy to be offering a unique insight into food and travel.
It is great for those who have never visited the places described – Italy, UK, Greece, Ireland, Vietnam, and Australia – and they are a glimmering thought on the horizon for future travels. For those who have, it is all little obvious.
Having said this, there are a few good moments such as a sweet little tale about his Nonno’s pasta and trekking in Vietnam. There are also surprisingly good descriptions about the historical significance of some of the places he visits, such as the Killing Fields and Hellfire Pass. Though, as this is pegged as being a travel and food combination book which begins lightly, the introduction of hard and gruesome tales means it becomes somewhat unfocused.
In places it is trite and exclamation marks are so excessively (and sometimes wrongly) used it becomes distracting. This becomes apparent with this not-ironic remark: “I honestly thought that the burger was the size of my head. And I have a big head!”*
There is also no indication of where the hungry traveller is from, meaning the reader has to guess. This is a fact that would have been gladly received earlier in the book – how is the reader supposed to view these countries, through whose eyes? It throws off the tone of the book. An example of this is on page 189 where he is in New York and Philadelphia. There is a description of Belgian beer and how it is more drinkable and has a higher alcohol content than “domestic” beers. Is he therefore American? One could venture a guess and say yes.
For the reader who is looking for an easy, inoffensive holiday read. It could have been better served with fuller, heartier descriptions of the food.
Memorable quote: *This is also the most memorable quote.
Published by Wattle Publishing, 2013.
Available from: Amazon