The Hezbollah Hiking Club

£9.99

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 only been back to Lebanon twice since. Then he read about an attempt to encourage tourism in this long-suffering country. The Lebanon Mountain Trail.

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SKU: 9781472128430 Category: Tags: ,

Description

Three men. 470 kilometres. Twenty-one days.

Welcome to the Downhill Hiking Club . . .

At a boozy, cricket-filled afternoon at Lord’s, Dom Joly convinces his two closest friends to agree to the unthinkable: a challenging hike across Lebanon, from the Israeli border in the south, along the spine of the country’s mountain range, all the way to the Syrian border in the north. For Joly it is something of a homecoming, having grown up in Beirut. It was a happy childhood, though he did go to school with Osama bin Laden.

Arriving in Lebanon armed with copious amounts of Vaseline – and no walking experience, bar taking the dog for the occasional stroll – Dom, Chris and Harry don’t quite know what they’ve got themselves into. Joined by their bemused chaperone Caroll, they meet a variety of characters along the way including Ali, a stony-faced Hezbollah Museum guide who seems unperturbed by circling Israeli jets, and part-time Londoner Raf, who challenges Dom and the boys to a brain-freeze drinking contest. From a hair-raising creep along the ‘Valley of the Skulls’ to accidentally flashing an unsuspecting Ethiopian cook, the three friends just about manage to keep going.

With more than a smattering of persiflage and some cringe-worthy moments, The Downhill Hiking Club is a big-hearted, witty and affectionate love letter to Lebanon and its rich history with a meditation on family and homeland at its heart. Written with Dom’s trademark humour, it is a paean to both the simple joys of friendship and to growing old disgracefully.

Additional information

Weight 0.24 kg
Dimensions 19.6 × 12.6 × 2.8 cm
Author

Publisher

Imprint

Cover

Paperback

Pages

320

Language

English

Edition
Dewey

915.69204453 (edition:23)

Readership

General – Trade / Code: K